Bound To Stay Bound

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 Knuffle Bunny : a cautionary tale
 Author: Willems, Mo

 Publisher:  Hyperion Books for Children
 Pub Year: 2004

 Classification: Easy
 Physical Description: [34] p., col. ill., 24 x 31 cm.

 BTSB No: 949587 ISBN: 9780786818709
 Ages: 2-5 Grades: K

 Father-daughter relationship -- Fiction
 Lost and found possessions -- Fiction
 Humorous fiction
 Toys -- Fiction

Price: $20.71

After a day of errands with Daddy, Trixie notices that her beloved Knuffle Bunny is missing.

Accelerated Reader Information:
   Interest Level: LG
   Reading Level: 1.60
   Points: .5   Quiz: 82297
Reading Counts Information:
   Interest Level: K-2
   Reading Level: 1.00
   Points: 1.0   Quiz: 35531

 Caldecott Honor, 2005

Common Core Standards 
   Grade K → Reading → RL Literature → Caldecott Honor Books
   CC Maps Recommended Works Gde K-5
   Grade K → Reading → RL Literature → K.RL Craft & Structure
   Grade K → Reading → RL Literature → K.RL Key Ideas & Details

   Kirkus Reviews (+) (08/01/04)
   School Library Journal (+) (10/04)
   Booklist (+) (09/15/04)
 The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (+) (10/04)
 The Hornbook (09/04)

Full Text Reviews:

Bulletin for the Center... - 10/01/2004 An ordinary trip to the laundromat with Daddy turns catastrophic when young Trixie notices that Knuffle Bunny, her necessary stuffed rabbit, isn't with them on the trip home. Unable to speak words that her father understands, Trixie wails and goes "boneless," but to no avail, since her father just gets irritated. Mom to the rescue—she immediately grasps the source of Trixie's discontent, and the family rushes to the laundromat to retrieve the beloved toy. As with his pigeon books (BCCB 5/03, BCCB 7/04), Willems' keen sense of illustration and design once again take center stage in this hilarious microdrama. He juxtaposes cartoon characters reminiscent of old Sunday comics against black-and-white photographic studies of an urban neighborhood, setting the whole thing on a creamy sage green background that occasionally breaks the frame to augment the mood of an illustration. The design is visually original and flawlessly executed, full of deliriously funny "turn-back-I-wanna-see-that-page-again" moments. Willems is a master minimalist, evoking emotion with the tilt of a mouth or the set of an eyebrow. The various neighborhood witnesses to Trixie's meltdown provide wry though mute commentary with their sidelong glances, Dad is especially heroic in his search for Knuffle Bunny, and Trixie is truly a toddler scorned when her charades fail to produce results. Willems definitely scores another home run with this one; bonus points go to readers/viewers who find the pigeon. - Copyright 2004 The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.

School Library Journal - 10/01/2004 PreS-Gr 1-Trixie steps lively as she goes on an errand with her daddy, down the block, through the park, past the school, to the Laundromat. For the toddler, loading and putting money into the machine invoke wide-eyed pleasure. But, on the return home, she realizes something. Readers will know immediately that her stuffed bunny has been left behind but try as she might, (in hilarious gibberish), she cannot get her father to understand her problem. Despite his plea of "please don't get fussy," she gives it her all, bawling and going "boneless." They both arrive home unhappy. Mom immediately sees that "Knuffle Bunny" is missing and so it's back to the Laundromat they go. After several tries, dad finds the toy among the wet laundry and reclaims hero status. Yet, this is not simply a lost-and-found tale. The toddler exuberantly exclaims, "Knuffle Bunny!!!" "And those were the first words Trixie ever said." The concise, deftly told narrative becomes the perfect springboard for the pictures. They, in turn, augment the story's emotional acuity. Printed on olive-green backdrops, the illustrations are a combination of muted, sepia-toned photographs upon which bright cartoon drawings of people have been superimposed. Personalities are artfully created so that both parents and children will recognize themselves within these pages. A seamless and supremely satisfying presentation of art and text.-Martha Topol, Traverse Area District Library, Traverse City, MI Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information. - Copyright 2004 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.

Booklist - 09/15/2004 *Starred Review* This comic gem proves that Caldecott Medal-winner Willems, the Dr. Spock and Robin Williams of the lap-sit crowd, has just as clear a bead on pre-verbal children as on silver-tongued preschoolers. On a father-daughter trip to the Laundromat, before toddler Trixie could even speak words, Daddy distractedly tosses her favorite stuffed bunny into the wash. Unfortunately, Trixie's desperate cries (aggle flaggle klabble) come across as meaningless baby talk, so she pitches a fit until perceptive Mommy and abashed Daddy sprint back to retrieve the toy. Willems chronicles this domestic drama with pitch-perfect text and illustrations that boldly depart from the spare formula of his previous books. Sepia-tone photographs of a Brooklyn neighborhood provide the backdrops for his hand-drawn artwork, intensifying the humor of the gleefully stylized characters--especially Trixie herself, who effectively registers all the universal signs of toddler distress, from the first quavery grimace to the uncooperative, boneless stage to the googly-eyed, gape-mouthed crisis point. Even children who can already talk a blue streak will come away satisfied that their own strong emotions have been mirrored and legitimized, and readers of all ages will recognize the agonizing frustration of a little girl who knows far more than she can articulate. - Copyright 2004 Booklist.

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