Fat, Fat Rose Marie

Lisa Passen, Author
Lisa Passen, Author Henry Holt & Company $14.95 (32p) ISBN 978-0-8050-1653-6
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It's never easy to be the new kid in class, but the ordeal is especially trying for children who look markedly different from their peers. Rose Marie, the newest student at Central Avenue Elementary, is overweight and is relentlessly taunted by the particularly cruel (and very thin) Genevieve. But Rose Marie finds comfort in her budding friendship with Claire, a meek girl who also endures teasing because of her red hair and freckles. Happily, Genevieve gets her comeuppance--which involves the creative use of an ice cream cone. Passen's ( Grammy & Sammy ) poignant exploration of the painful gulf between individuality and conformity is right on target. Readers will applaud Rose Marie's dignity and Claire's spunk as the two girls stand up for what they know is right. Slightly cartoonish characters with large heads and bulbous, exaggerated facial features help lift the serious tone of the text without making light of its important ``be yourself'' theme. Ages 4-8. (Oct.)
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