Sunday, March 18, 2012
Children's Book Review: One Cool Friend
One Cool Friend
Written by: Toni Buzzeo
Pictures by: David Small
Published by: Dial Books for Young Readers, 2012
On a momentous visit to the aquarium, Elliot discovers his dream pet: a penguin. It's just proper enough for a straight-laced boy like him. And when he asks his father if he may have one (please and thank you), his father says yes. Elliot should have realized that Dad probably thought he meant a stuffed penguin and not a real one . . . Clever illustrations and a wild surprise ending make this sly, silly tale of friendship and wish fulfillment a kid-pleaser from start to finish.
* After recently reading Mr. Popper's Penguins to my daughter (which we didn't enjoy very much), this book felt similar on many levels. The names of the characters/penguins, having a penguin for a pet, the penguin sleeping in the freezer. The father in the book didn't seem very engaged or interactive with his son, Elliot. As for Elliot, who is supposed to be such a proper, young man, taking a penguin from the aquarium doesn't seem very proper now, does it?! Of course this book had a surprise twist at the end of the story that we were not expecting. My daughter thought it was just okay, as did the rest of us.
Family Rating: So-so.