By Barbara Park
Random House Children’s Books, $12.99, 125 pages
In true Junie B. form, Barbara Park has written and illustrated a survival guide for school. As expected, the drawings are quirky and the advice funny. The book is divided into six sections beginning with Getting Started, followed by Getting There, Getting Bossed Around, Getting in Trouble, Getting Graded and Getting Smiley. Getting Started opens with backpack information. The backpack drawing has tips written in a child’s hand and some really humorous tips such as “your mother will buy the cheapest backpack in the store.” And of course, “a bad report card is the heaviest load of all!” How right she is! Each page is littered with advice and cute, simplistic drawings. Items are crossed out and respelled correctly and words are highlighted when they are “really important”. There are places for your reader to add notes and drawings, too.
“Polite is the grownup word for do not blow milk out of your nose and other things of that nature.”
Park has written and illustrated a fun, humorous book that any child will love to read and add his own notes and drawings. This is the perfect book for any child that might be anxious about going to school (given the humor and playfulness) but also gives parents and school children a shared vocabulary and things to talk about both on a funny and serious level.
Reviewed by Seniye Groff