Bound To Stay Bound

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 Naked Mole Rat gets dressed
 Author: Willems, Mo

 Publisher:  Hyperion Books for Children (2009)

 Classification: Easy
 Physical Description: [34] p., col. ill., 18 x 27 cm.

 BTSB No: 949596 ISBN: 9781423114376
 Ages: 3-7 Grades: K-2

 Naked mole rats -- Fiction
 Clothing and dress -- Fiction

Price: $21.88

Wilbur is different because he wears clothes. But what will happen when Grandpah, the oldest, wisest, and most naked Naked Mole Rat ever discovers Wilbur's secret?

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Accelerated Reader Information:
   Interest Level: LG
   Reading Level: 2.80
   Points: .5   Quiz: 127705
Reading Counts Information:
   Interest Level: K-2
   Reading Level: 2.30
   Points: 1.0   Quiz: 45785

Common Core Standards 
   Grade K → Reading → RL Literature → K.RL Key Ideas & Details
   Grade K → Reading → RL Literature → K.RL Craft & Structure
   Grade K → Reading → RL Literature → K.RL Integration of Knowledge & Ideas
   Grade 1 → Reading → RL Reading Literature → 1.RL Key Ideas & Details
   Grade 1 → Reading → RL Reading Literature → 1.RL Range of Reading & Level of Text Complexity
   Grade 2 → Reading → RL Reading Literature → 2.RL Key Ideas & Details
   Grade 2 → Reading → RL Reading Literature → 2.RL Range of Reading & Level of Text Complexity
   Grade 2 → Reading → CCR College & Career Readiness Anchor Standards fo

   Kirkus Reviews (12/01/08)
   School Library Journal (02/01/09)
   Booklist (11/15/08)
 The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (+) (02/09)

Full Text Reviews:

Booklist - 11/15/2008 Willems begins by giving us all the background we need about naked mole rats: “1. They are a little bit rat. 2. They are a little bit mole. 3. They are all naked.” All except Wilbur, an earnest dandy who can’t resist donning ties, jackets, pants, hats, or even entire superhero or astronaut getups. After all, the more outfits he has, the more he can pretend to be all sorts of different characters. Wilbur’s nude friends are appalled and complain to the colony ruler, who unexpectedly decrees that, from here on, their colony will be clothing-optional. Soon everyone is crazily clad and snapping up duds from Wilbur’s new clothing store. Willems’ art follows the simple style of his Elephant and Piggie books, and is dominated in color by (no surprise) naked-mole-rat pink. An ongoing horizontal line lends continuity to most of the pages, occasionally curving to add simple architecture to the scenes. But mostly it is Wilbur’s guileless observations that will have young readers feeling good about individual expression. - Copyright 2008 Booklist.

Bulletin for the Center... - 02/01/2009 There’s one in every crowd, an iconoclast who won’t follow the rules; in the case of naked mole rats, it’s Wilbur, who just can’t resist a natty shirt and tie: “When the other naked mole rats saw him, they said: ‘Eeeeeewwwww!’ ‘Yuck!’ “What are you doing?’” Wilbur, it seems, likes the versatility that clothing allows (“I can be . . . fancy, or funny, or cool, or I can just be an astronaut”), but the other NMRs are scandalized and respond to Wilbur’s desire for attire by ratting him out to Grand-pah, “the oldest, greatest, and most naked naked mole rat ever.” After much thought, the wise Grand-pah issues a proclamation that all naked mole rats can dress, or not, as they like, prompting several to give apparel a go (give tees a chance?). Wilbur’s tale is amusing in its own right, and there’s plenty of humor in the inversion of usual kidly desires; Willems’ writing is as humorously and cheerfully absurd as ever (“Grand-pah did look heroic. Grand-pah did look regal. But he would also look heroic and regal in a casual shirt and some summer slacks”). The little bucktoothed, box-jawed pink naked mole rats look, endearingly, a bit like biped pink hippos with overbites and tails (in fact, there’s a slight suggestion of James Marshall’s George and Martha), and Willems continues to be a master at conveying an amazing amount of emotion and humor using the minimal elements of his figures’ dot eyes, dash eyebrows, and body language. Gently subversive in the way it questions the norm, Wilbur’s story will please classroom rebels, Willems fans, and those who just like to giggle at the word “naked.” JH - Copyright 2009 The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.

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