Nanette’s Baguette

Mo Willems. Hyperion, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-4847-2286-2
Three-time Caldecott Honor–recipient Willems celebrates the allure of fresh-baked bread in this tale of good intentions. Nanette is a French schoolgirl in a quaint straw hat and plaid skirt. (Ce n’est pas gentil to depict her as a frog, peut-être, even if the national allusion is lost on the readership.) Her mother hands her a coin and sends her to the bakery: “Getting to get the baguette is Nanette’s biggest responsibility yet. Is Nanette set to get the baguette? You bet!” She sees four friends, but cannot linger: “ ‘Gotta jet! I’ve got a baguette to get,’ says Nanette to the quartet.” Baker Juliette sells Nanette a loaf, and the girl samples a warm bite. Across four explosive spreads, punctuated by the “krack! krack!” of crunching, Nanette devours the treat, then droops home “beset with regret.” Willems builds multimedia collages of cut paper, comic illustrations, and photos, escalating from calm rectangular panels to pointed, starry shapes. His goofy wordplay and onomatopoeic display type amplify the hilarity, and temptation is demonstrably forgiven in a funny coda: Nanette’s mother finds baguettes just as irresistible. Ages 3–5. Agent: Marcia Wernick, Wernick & Pratt. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 07/18/2016
Release date: 10/25/2016
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