Synopses & Reviews
Angelina Neatolini came from a long line of neat and tidy people. In fact, her great, great, great, great, great, great grandfather invented the garbage can. Her mother ironed her linguini and her father vacuumed the grass. But Angelina liked to roll in the dirt whenever she could.
And like most kids, Angelina wanted a pet, but pets are messy and the Neatolini parents did not allow mess in their new house at the end of Ladybug Lane, where they recently moved from the dirty city. Enter a hard-of-hearing and very daffy fairy godmother ladybug—and magic, mess, and mayhem ensued in the house at the end of Ladybug Lane, which became anything but neat.
This magical, funny story has messages of tolerance, "it's OK to be different," and unrealistic parental pressure, and it features the spot-on whimsical art of newcomer Valeria Docampo.
"Angelina's parents are neat freaks their last name is Neatolini, and they think nothing of vacuuming their lawn or polishing the flowers but the neatness gene seems to have skipped a generation. As much as they try to keep their daughter immaculate, 'five minutes later, Angelina was always wrinkly and rumpled and covered in crumbs.' Needless to say, a pet is out of the question, until Angelina joins forces with a hard-of-hearing fairy godmother like ladybug, who conjures up a pest (instead of a pet) with amazing baking skills that beguile the senior Neatolinis. Primavera's (the Louise the Big Cheese series) storytelling is often woolly and wandering, and there's the sense of a narrative being stretched too far, complete with several jokes about misheard wishes (the ladybug hears 'spider' when Angelina says 'viper'). But the book is worth sticking with, if only to enjoy Docampo's (Tip-Tap Pop) extravagantly imagined, almost hallucinogenically hued gouache vignettes, which bring to mind Tim Burton's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory minus the edge. Ages 4 8. Agent: Steven Malk, Writers House. Illustrator's agent: MB Artists." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
About the Author
ELISE PRIMAVERA has been writing and illustrating children's books for more than 25 years. She has received numerous awards for her work, and in 2004 she was asked to illustrate the Christmas Brochure for the White House. Her bestselling book Auntie Claus has sold almost a half a million copies and inspired two sequels. She lives in Red Bank, New Jersey, with her dog, Lulu, for whom she named the main character in her recent book Thumb Love.