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The feisty series inaugurated in Amber Brown Is Not a Crayon is not just for middle graders any more--with these two volumes, Danziger and Ross introduce their winning heroine to beginning readers as well. Making Amber younger and showing the Brown family before divorce, Danziger simplifies her prose style without reducing her energy. She keeps several story lines moving, and she invigorates them with her characteristic love of puns and her kid-targeted sense of humor. In Justin Time, for example, which opens on the eve of Amber's birthday, she agitates for a watch ("I, Amber Brown, am one very excited six-year, 364-day-old kid"); she also tries to come to terms with her best friend's perpetual tardiness (the friend is Justin Daniels, who moves away in Crayon). In Trip, the Browns and the Daniels vacation together in the Poconos, during the course of which Justin hurts Amber's feelings, a business phone call during a dad-supervised outdoor sleepover annoys Amber, and Justin's left-out little brother finds a way to be included. The emotions are real and recognizable, and Amber's first-person narration makes even obvious jokes seem spontaneous (such as a riff on Poconos/"poke a nose"). Ross brings extra verve to his contributions. In Justin Time, for example, as Amber tells her stuffed-toy gorilla about the gift she wants, Ross shows her drawing a watch onto the gorilla's wrist. In aiming for a younger audience, Danziger and Ross have kept their standards just as high. Ages 5-8.
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
Gr 1-3-This easy-reader goes back to when Amber Brown is turning seven and time is of the essence. She has mastered telling time and wants nothing more than a watch for her birthday. Her best friend, Justin, on the other hand, has no regard for keeping time. He tells her that he'll be at her house "in three minutes" but doesn't appear for half an hour. Amber does get her birthday wish and realizes that friends can have differences and still get along. She sees that being on time works for her and "Justin Time" works for him. The illustrations capture the mood of the story, which is playful and spirited. Beginning readers will enjoy sharing Amber's pre-birthday anticipation and older readers may want to go back and see the early years of the characters they know and love. Either way, this title will be a welcome addition to most collections.-Genevieve Ceraldi, New York Public Library
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.See all Product Description