Saturday, July 25, 2009

Review: Wilson and Miss Lovely

Summary: Wilson had just finished his first week of school and could not wait for the next one to begin. He was very fond of his new teacher, Miss Lovely. But something was wrong that day—very wrong. There were no school buses, the school itself was empty, and something strange was approaching. Undeterred and ever-hopeful that he would see Miss Lovely soon, Wilson went through his normal school day alone—he did his math lesson alone, his science lesson alone, sent himself to the principal’s office when he was naughty, and more, but still . . . something was approaching. Stadler skillfully uses gatefold flaps to keep the suspense mounting until we find out just who—or what—was approaching. Readers will love following Wilson and his day at school right out of a Twilight Zone episode in this funny, sweet, and sometimes scary story. -- Robin Corey Books

I though it was interesting that both of my kids really enjoyed reading WILSON AND MISS LOVELY: A BACK-TO-SCHOOL MYSTERY by John Stadler. I think the almost 10 year old girl liked it for different reasons than the almost 5 year old boy, but I guess it says something about a book when they both like it. One thing they both agreed on is that this book was very funny.

Poor Wilson begins his normal school day routine only to find that he is the one one there. He does his math work, his science work and even sends himself to the principal's office when he misbehaves. Wilson is confused and also a little bit scared when he doesn't see his teacher or his friends anywhere. As I read this book, I could tell that my son was wondering where everyone was and what was going to happen to Wilson.

One thing that was very cute about this book were the illustrations. Wilson is just the cutest little rabbit with adorable facial expressions. My son in particular liked that the book had some pages which folded out -- he always likes to "help" read his books; and I think he really enjoyed seeing the "monster" that kept appearing behind the flaps. He also seemed to like that the book had a surprise or two thrown in at the end, and he thought the last page of the book was very funny. As for me, I thought the author did a terrific job of building suspense for the young readers. I had a good time seeing my son's reaction to the scary monster at the end of the book.

I think WILSON AND MISS LOVELY is the perfect book for this time of the year when we are starting to think about the end of summer and the beginning of school. I also think teachers are going to enjoy reading this book to their students come fall. WILSON AND MISS LOVELY should help ease the back-to-school anxieties that many children have because it shows that Wilson loved his first week of school so much that he couldn't wait to go back for more. Another added bonus is that this book has a character who is excited about school and learning.

The author, John Stadler, has written almost 30 children's books, including BIG AND LITTLE and HOORAY FOR SNAIL! Many of his titles have been selected by ALA Editor's Choice, the Children's Book Council's Children's Choice and Reading Rainbow. He has also been featured in the New York Times Parent's Guide to the Best Books for Children. Needless to say, he is most definitely an accomplished author of children's books.

Thanks to the publisher for sending us a copy of WILSON AND MISS LOVELY.


ANovelMenagerie said...

The cover is adorable!

Anonymous said...

I love the cover too! I'm going to have to run over to B&N today and see what happens at the end! :--)

Beth F said...

A book that grabs a 10-yr-old *and* a 5-yr-old is some kids' book! Sounds like another good one to add to my gift list for the little ones in our family.

Gwendolyn B. said...

I'm definitely looking for this one - I really like John Stadler. My very first review was of his book THE BALLAD OF WILBUR AND THE MOOSE. Thanks for spotlighting this one!