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365 Penguinsby Jean Luc Fromental
On January 1st, a family is surprised by a delivery: a single penguin from a mysterious sender. What's more, the delivery continues — one penguin for each day until, by the end of the year, their house is so stuffed with penguins that the family has to celebrate a cold New Year's Eve out on their front lawn. This picture book is overall fantastic — the story is imaginative and even includes counting concepts for some educational appeal — but the illustrations really put it over the top; they're bold and simple with a retro appeal, and you could read this book a dozen times and find a penguin hiding where you'd least expect it.
Synopses & Reviews
On the first day of the new year, the mailman brings a surprise — a penguin! One by one, day by day, penguins fill the house. At first they are cute, but with every passing day, the penguins pile up — along with the family's problems. Feeding, cleaning, and housing the penguins becomes a monumental task! But who is sending these penguins, and why?
In a large format, and with lots of opportunity for counting, 365 Penguins is sure to become a wintertime staple.
"Comical math problems and an ecological message form a memorable counterpoint in Fromental's story of 365 penguins, one for each day of the year. The cheerful boy narrator of this oversize paper-over-board book recalls how a deliveryman brought a box to his family on New Year's Day. Inside, he and his older sister are thrilled to find a penguin and an unsigned note: 'I'm number 1. Feed me when I'm hungry.' Their parents look less pleased, especially when more shipments show up. 'At the end of January, there were thirty-one penguins,' and after February, they tally 31 plus 28. 'On April the tenth exactly, penguin number 100 arrived,' and the family calculates the weight and cost of the penguins' daily fish. They build penguin-storage cabinets and struggle to clean up after their charges. All but one penguin have orange feet, and readers play hide-and-seek with blue-footed Chilly; the lookalike birds' contrasting black and white, plus the complementary orange and blue of the family house, contribute to Jolivet's striking mod design. On December 31, the doorbell rings and the mystery is solved. Uncle Victor — a gray-bearded explorer in Birkenstocks — briskly summarizes his dubious attempt to protect this endangered species. Victor's postal plan clearly is impractical and removes threatened animals from their habitat. Yet Fromental and Jolivet creatively make the points that each penguin needs care and feeding, that humans have difficult responsibilities and that the world's creatures add up. Ages 5-up." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
Nana Quimby has a curious problem. She wants to bake a cake, but it seems her whole cellar is filled with water! Too much water! That can be very distracting.
Nana puts a call into the plumber, who thankfully makes a house call. After the plumber leaves and the water is gone, with just one thump, Nana Quimby has an even more curious problem:
TOO MANY FROGS! First one frog comes from the basement. Then ten frogs. Then twenty, thirty, more, more, more. Nana Quimby goes about her business, stirring the batter, filling the cake pans, watching the oven, frosting the cake. But the thumping, bumping, banging, bonking frogs become too much to ignore! Croak!
With advice from some very clever neighborhood kids, will Nana Quimby be able solve her ribbeting problem and enjoy her cake in peace and quiet?
About the Author
In addition to writing for film, television, and newspapers, Jean-Luc Fromental is the author of about thirty books, including novels, travelogues, children’s books, and comics. Joelle Jolivet is an internationally acclaimed illustrator. Publishers Weekly has called her books “vibrant… dazzling” and School Library Journal said they “are aesthetically impressive as they are informative.”
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