The Fabulous Flying Fandinis

Ingrid Slyder, Author, Ingrid Slyder, Illustrator Dutton Books $14.99 (32p) ISBN 978-0-525-65212-0
The Fabulous Flying Fandinis live in a multicolored turreted house, go shopping by elephant and find it practical to wear stilts when pruning their trees. Their restrained young neighbor Bobby Brown, prompted by his parents, stops by and observes their acrobatic feats. Yet when invited to ""Jump on! Join in!"" Bobby is reluctant--what if he looks stupid? While the ""if you don't try, you won't find out"" message is trumpeted without subtlety and the plot is thin, the book nonetheless exerts considerable appeal, chiefly because of debut author/artist Slyder's finely turned art. With meticulous cross-hatching that brings to mind the hand of Edward Gorey, her cheerfully colored pictures capture the enthusiastic eccentricity of her characters. They leap and spin, bounce and balance in high style, their activities a striking contrast to those of their more sedate neighbors. Each composition, even the busiest, is carefully ordered, so that it retains a simple, unfettered feel. A promising debut. Ages 4-8. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 09/02/1996
Release date: 09/01/1996
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