JIMMY ZANGWOW'S OUT-OF-THIS-WORLD MOON PIE ADVENTURE

A lad's quest for a classic snack takes him to distant corners of the universe in this retroflavored, roller coaster picture book debut. When Mom rejects his plea for a moon pie, Jimmy soars off into space in his homemade race car/rocket ship, taking on a thousand moon pies from the Man in the Moon, dipping gallons of milk from the Milky Way, then reluctantly but gamely sharing it all, after a crash landing, with 999 hungry Martians and a peckish monster with a loudly rumbling tummy. In red cowboy boots and aviator goggles, sporting freckles and a gap toothed grin, Jimmy looks like a living Howdy Doody, with his jalopy, made from crates and buggy wheels, the Martians, who look like tops with bright blue heads, and other features of his elaborately detailed surroundings of like vintage. In the end, Martians and monster repay Jimmy's generosity by constructing a moon pie wrapper balloon that floats him home in time for dinner (Brussels-sproutnoodlebean casserole) and, (yes!) guess what for dessert. DiTerlizzi pays visual homage to a gallery of illustrators from Arthur Rackham to Mercer Mayer, and gives his intrepid protagonist an infectious look of wide-eyed excitement. Tempt fans of David Wiesner's Sector 7 (1999) and William Joyce's books with this highflying, lipsmacking adventure. (Picture book. 79)

Pub Date: April 1, 2000

ISBN: 0-689-82215-4

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2000

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ABIYOYO RETURNS

The seemingly ageless Seeger brings back his renowned giant for another go in a tuneful tale that, like the art, is a bit sketchy, but chockful of worthy messages. Faced with yearly floods and droughts since they’ve cut down all their trees, the townsfolk decide to build a dam—but the project is stymied by a boulder that is too huge to move. Call on Abiyoyo, suggests the granddaughter of the man with the magic wand, then just “Zoop Zoop” him away again. But the rock that Abiyoyo obligingly flings aside smashes the wand. How to avoid Abiyoyo’s destruction now? Sing the monster to sleep, then make it a peaceful, tree-planting member of the community, of course. Seeger sums it up in a postscript: “every community must learn to manage its giants.” Hays, who illustrated the original (1986), creates colorful, if unfinished-looking, scenes featuring a notably multicultural human cast and a towering Cubist fantasy of a giant. The song, based on a Xhosa lullaby, still has that hard-to-resist sing-along potential, and the themes of waging peace, collective action, and the benefits of sound ecological practices are presented in ways that children will both appreciate and enjoy. (Picture book. 5-9)

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 2001

ISBN: 0-689-83271-0

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2001

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It’s slanted toward action-oriented readers, who will find that Briticisms meld with all the other wonders of magic school.

HARRY POTTER AND THE SORCERER'S STONE

From the Harry Potter series , Vol. 1

In a rousing first novel, already an award-winner in England, Harry is just a baby when his magical parents are done in by Voldemort, a wizard so dastardly other wizards are scared to mention his name.

So Harry is brought up by his mean Uncle Vernon and Aunt Petunia Dursley, and picked on by his horrid cousin Dudley. He knows nothing about his magical birthright until ten years later, when he learns he’s to attend Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Hogwarts is a lot like English boarding school, except that instead of classes in math and grammar, the curriculum features courses in Transfiguration, Herbology, and Defense Against the Dark Arts. Harry becomes the star player of Quidditch, a sort of mid-air ball game. With the help of his new friends Ron and Hermione, Harry solves a mystery involving a sorcerer’s stone that ultimately takes him to the evil Voldemort. This hugely enjoyable fantasy is filled with imaginative details, from oddly flavored jelly beans to dragons’ eggs hatched on the hearth.

It’s slanted toward action-oriented readers, who will find that Briticisms meld with all the other wonders of magic school. (Fiction. 10-14)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 1998

ISBN: 978-0-590-35340-3

Page Count: 309

Publisher: Levine/Scholastic

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1998

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