Synopses & Reviews
6½ stories about 2 surprising friends.
Having a stuffed alligator for a best friend can be surprising.
Sometimes Amanda surprises her alligator with books. Sometimes Alligator surprises Amanda by eating them.
But what happens when Amanda brings home a special — and not entirely welcome — surprise? The result might be unexpected indeed.
Beloved author-illustrator Mo Willems has created a funny and tender portrait of friendship that readers of any age will love.
"Six and a half short stories make up this expertly paced page-turner about a girl and her toy alligator, laced with the kid-centric humor on which Willems has built his career. Willems presents everyday, indoor interactions between Amanda and her teal-blue, nontoothy pal, drawn in grainy black crayon with watercolor wash. Alligator waits impatiently for Amanda to return from the library, then asks, 'Do you have a surprise for me?' Amanda indulges him by shouting, 'Boo!' Then, in a bit of turnabout, while Amanda reads her library books Alligator observes, 'Something tickles,' followed by 'I do!' Another ticklish subject arises when Alligator discovers his price tag and that he came from 'the sale bucket' ('Nobody wanted to buy you,' Amanda admits, adding, 'because they knew you were meant to be my best friend'). The emphasis rests on quiet, ordinary events and the characters' comfortable alliance, which is temporarily threatened by a rival panda toy who bears a resemblance to Knuffle Bunny. As in his Elephant and Piggie books, Willems ends on a generous note, showing how Alligator and Panda overcome their superficial differences and giggle together. Ages 4 – 8. (May)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Amanda and her alligator have lots of fun together, but when Amanda's grandfather buys her a panda, Alligator must learn to make new friends.
About the Author
Mo Willems is a three-time Caldecott Honor-winning Dinosaur (for Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus!, Knuffle Bunny, and Knuffle Bunny Too). He also won two Geisel Medals for There Is a Bird on Your Head! and Are You Ready to Play Outside?, and a Geisel Honor for We Are in a Book! His books are perennial New York Times bestsellers, including Knuffle Bunny Free and Hooray for Amanda and Her Alligator! Before he turned to making picture books, Mo was a writer and animator on Sesame Street, where he won six Emmys. Mo lives happily ever after with his family in Massachusetts.