Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Big Kicks

Booklist starred (September 1, 2008 (Vol. 105, No. 1))
Preschool-Grade 3. Biggie Bear is something of a loner whose life is centered around his love of jazz and his stamp collecting. But the quiet is interrupted when a local soccer team knocks at his door. Fluff the Duck, Smelly Smell Skunk, et al., are looking for a new team member: a big one. They need someone with a big kick, someone big and brave, someone with a big brain. We need someone who doesn’t stink, says Smelly. Biggie demurs. He has never played before. However, with assurances that he is big and the ball is little, Biggie gives it a go. It doesn’t go very well. An amusing two-page spread shows Biggie all over the field as he tries to kick and stop the ball. It’s only after he sees a stamp on the ground, stops to pick it up, and the ball bounces off his head to the goal, that success is assured. A very strong story combines with delightful digital artwork that is vibrant without being garish and simple without being simplistic. In fact, there is so much to see in each spread (to say nothing of the varied and clever stamp-filled endpapers) that kids will continue looking this over after the first couple of reads. This also has a great message about being yourself yet still finding ways to fit in.

No comments: