Amy Is Famous

Barbara Bottner, illus. by Yuyi Chen. Imprint, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-250-13490-5
Bottner (Priscilla Gorilla) explores classroom dynamics through two fame-obsessed girls. Upon receiving teacherly stars for a poem and a drawing, Amy believes she must be famous, so she practices her autographs and wears all red to school (“Famous people wear red”). Her sense of self-importance is punctured by the arrival of a new girl, who launches to popularity when she shows up dressed first like Hermione Granger (“from the Harry Potter movie”), then as Hello Kitty, and finally in Amy’s own beloved crimson. “There can’t be two famous people in one tiny classroom!” declares Amy. Though her mother suggests that the new student is just trying to find her way, Amy grouses about her reversal of fortune until an unexpected playdate helps both kids discover that fame and itchy costumes aren’t all they’re cracked up to be. Illustrations by Chen (Doris the Bookasaurus) convey Amy’s mixed emotions, but the story’s focus on the superficial as the main means by which Amy and the new girl express themselves flattens the message. Ages 3–6. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 10/29/2018
Release date: 02/19/2019
Genre: Children's
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