A Giant Crush

Gennifer Choldenko, Author, Melissa Sweet, Illustrator
Gennifer Choldenko, illus. by Melissa Sweet. Putnam, $16.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-399-24352-3
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Newbery Honor author Choldenko touches on themes from her earlier picture books—shyness (Louder, Lili) and being too tall or short (How to Make Friends with a Giant)—in this story about Jackson, the rabbit with the titular giant crush. Narration comes from Jackson’s unnamed best friend, who watches as Jackson’s budding feelings for a fellow student, Cami, are overshadowed by the antics of a loud-mouthed, attention-stealing classmate. With some encouragement from his friend (“If you’re going to like a girl, Jackson, you have to at least tell her”), Jackson makes his move, and it pays off. Both Choldenko’s spot-on playground dialogue and Sweet’s characteristically loose and lighthearted mixed-media artwork show an abundance of empathy (and a dash of humor) when it comes to matters of the heart. Ages 5–8. (Dec.)
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