Saturday, March 10, 2018

FNG Review: Lucy and the String by Vanessa Roeder

Lucy and the String by Vanessa Roeder. unpgd. Dial Books for Young Readers/ Penguin Young Readers Group, August, 2018. 9780735230491.

What would you do if you saw a loose string? Tug it, of course, especially when it is such an inviting red color. What would you do if it got stuck? Yank it until it gives, of course. What you do if you encountered a grumpy, big, old bear at the end of that beautiful yarn? He's grumpy because Lucy has unraveled his beautiful red knit pants. Will our irrepressible heroine make amends? Find out when this delightful book hits the shelves in August. 

Using just three colors, Roeder has created a disarming story about how our actions have consequences and how we should find a way to fix our mistakes. Rosy-cheeked, gap-toothed and spirited, Lucy just can't resist the bright, red string, delighting in the ever-growing snarl of yarn until she hears a real snarl and discovers that she is unraveling the sweater of a huge, very unhappy bear! Hank is not happy.

Brilliant cartoonists can convey such a range of emotion with a few simple lines. In one double-page spread Lucy's rosy cheeks turn into a pink face of embarassment while Hank's red face is clearly angry. The following spots show the shifts Lucy and Hank's emotion as remorse turns to resolve. When her attempts to cheer him up do not work, she decides one hilarious fix after another.

This is one begs to be read aloud again and again. 

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