Three-Star Billy

Pat Hutchins, Author Greenwillow Books $15 (1p) ISBN 978-0-688-13078-7
Reverse psychology tames a young monster's temper in this amusingly told but clumsily illustrated tale. Billy, a pea-green, pointy-fanged fellow, resists nursery school, expressing his displeasure by throwing paints, howling during chorus and stomping around during dance class. Billy's teacher (a blue, horned creature) slyly awards him a star with each ``dreadful, monstrous'' outburst. Puzzled by this reaction, Billy soon settles down and even gets to like the classroom. Though Hutchins (The Very Worst Monster) advocates patience here, youngsters might use Billy's attention-getting behavior as an excuse for scenes of their own. Still, it's clear that the author understands why fearful children can react like monsters to new environments. Less apt are the renderings of the school's none-too-cute assortment of beasties. Hutchins's opaque, garish gouaches lie heavily against clean, white backgrounds, and the characters gesture stiffly. Ages 3-up. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 08/29/1994
Release date: 09/01/1994
Genre: Children's
Library Binding - 21 pages - 978-0-688-13079-4
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