UP AND DOWN ON THE MERRY-GO-ROUND

A rollicking celebration of everyone's favorite ride. Lilting verse ("A prancing pig,/a dancing bear,/an ostrich loping,/and a hopping hare,/gliding, striding,/everyone riding,/side by side,/giddy-up! giddy-up!/I'll ride the wind,/they'll never catch up") is accompanied by joyous watercolors of children astride a succession of marvelously varied steeds, whiffing across the page. Rand captures the range of emotion—apprehension, pride, cautious enthusiasm, sheer delight—plus the whiffing motion and the sensation of returning to humdrum earth. Dad eating our popcorn while he waits and the almost-lost ticket are realistic touches.

Pub Date: June 30, 1988

ISBN: 0805016384

Page Count: 36

Publisher: Henry Holt

Review Posted Online: Oct. 24, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 1988

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A witty addition to the long-running series.

THE DEEP END

From the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series , Vol. 15

The Wimpy Kid hits the road.

The Heffley clan has been stuck living together in Gramma’s basement for two months, waiting for the family home to be repaired, and the constant togetherness has been getting on everybody’s nerves. Luckily Greg’s Uncle Gary has a camper waiting for someone to use it, and so the Heffleys set off on the open road looking for an adventurous vacation, hoping the changing scenery will bring a spark back to the family unit. The winding road leads the Heffleys to a sprawling RV park, a setting teeming with possibilities for Greg to get up to his usual shenanigans. Greg’s snarky asides and misadventures continue to entertain. At this point the Wimpy Kid books run like a well-oiled machine, paced perfectly with witty lines, smart gags, and charming cartoons. Kinney knows just where to put a joke, the precise moment to give a character shading, and exactly how to get the narrative rolling, spinning out the oddest plot developments. The appreciation Kinney has for these characters seeps through the novels, endearing the Heffleys to readers even through this title, the 15th installment in a franchise boasting spinoffs, movies, and merchandise. There may come a time when Greg and his family overstay their welcome, but thankfully that day still seems far off.

A witty addition to the long-running series. (Humor. 7-12)

Pub Date: Oct. 27, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-4197-4868-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Amulet/Abrams

Review Posted Online: Nov. 24, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 2020

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IF I RAN THE CIRCUS

The Circus McGurkus got started, they say, in the mind of young Morris McGurk, who one day got to thinking about the big vacant lot behind Sneelock's store. What a wonderful spot it would make for a tent and some animals, he thought. From the Foon to the Hoodwink they come prancing by to give you a treat of the Seuss's mind's eye and with Sneelock as hero and Morris announcing, we have a Circus McGurkus astounding.

Pub Date: Oct. 12, 1956

ISBN: 039480080X

Page Count: 84

Publisher: Random House

Review Posted Online: Oct. 19, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 1956

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