April and Esme: Tooth Fairies

Bob Graham, Author
Bob Graham, Candlewick, $16.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-7636-4683-7
Reviewed on: 09/20/2010
Release date: 09/01/2010
Paperback - 32 pages - 978-0-7636-6347-6
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Graham (How to Heal a Broken Wing) serves up a sweetly comic adventure starring a family of tooth fairies. Seven-year-old April Underhill has been summoned by cellphone to perform her very first nighttime tooth collection. She and her six-year-old sister, Esme, persuade their concerned parents that they are up to the task and set off into the night. Courage, pluck, and derring-do guide them most of the way—but a quick text message from Mommy ensures that the girls add the proper finishing touch to the job. Graham excels at blending nostalgic family stories with a contemporary sensibility. As always, there's plenty of story to be gleaned from his airy ink-and-watercolor compositions. The Underhills live in a tiny fairy house near a tree stump. All members of the clan have crisp white wings—even the dog—and all are dressed in modern clothing and use cellphones and environmentally friendly string bags in their work. A mix of spot art, comic panels, and spreads invite readers into this magical but never truly unfamiliar world. Ages 5–7. (Oct.)
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