Princess Penelope's Parrot

Helen Lester, Author, Lynn M. Munsinger, Illustrator
Helen Lester, Author, Lynn M. Munsinger, Illustrator Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) $15 (32p) ISBN 978-0-395-78320-7
Reviewed on: 10/02/1996
Release date: 10/01/1996
It's Penelope's birthday, and decked out in a dress that has ""ruffles on its ruffles on its ruffles,"" the ultra-spoiled princess is naturally getting everything she wants, including mouthfuls of cake, a 16-wheeler bike and jewel-studded roller blades. One gift, however, refuses to fit into Penelope's game plan: a bright green parrot, who is so appalled by its new owner's greediness that it refuses to speak. Penelope fumes at the bird, but the joke is on her: everything she says to it comes back to haunt her at a most inauspicious moment. There may be no one more adroit at wryly depicting childish petulance than Munsinger, while Lester's storytelling calls to mind the dry wit of a Thurber. Shrewdly, author and artist punish Penelope but they do not reform her; they will tickle their readers with their antiheroine's irremediably bad behavior. Ages 4-8. (Oct.)
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