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From the Llama Llama series

by Anna Dewdney & Reed Duncan ; illustrated by JT Morrow

Pub Date: May 1st, 2018
ISBN: 978-0-670-01397-5
Publisher: Viking

Llama Llama is growing up and experiencing the frustrations and excitement of learning to read.

Llama Llama knows the alphabet, but the next step is to put those letters together to make words. And putting those words together makes stories! Progress is slow going at first, beginning with familiar words such as Llama Llama’s name and “love.” But the pace picks up, and soon Llama Llama is a proud reader (all seemingly in one day). Some rhymes are a bit off, and the feel is more instructional than warm: “Words tell truth. / Words tell new things. / Words make songs / that we can sing! // Words are the very best of presents. / Words together make a sentence!” What shines is the tiny llama’s perseverance and sense of personal achievement. “Who can’t wait to read to Mama? / You’re a READER, llama llama (sic)!” Duncan, Dewdney’s partner and director of the Anna E. Dewdney Literary Trust, collaborated with the late, beloved author on the text of this newest in the series. Morrow closely follows Dewdney’s art style with bright, bold colors and expressive animal friends. Perhaps inevitably, the whole package doesn’t quite feel like a true Llama Llama book, but it is an adequate example of the learning-to-read genre.

Fans of the series will always clamor for more, but this is not likely to be one that they will ask for again and again.

(Picture book. 3-6)