No, No, Gnome!

Ashlyn Anstee. Simon & Schuster, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-4814-3091-3
The classroom garden is ready for harvest, and everyone is excited—especially Gnome, a garden gnome who could have easily wandered in from a vintage Golden Book. But the class’s communal spirits falter as it becomes clear that Gnome has almost zero impulse control. After making a mess of the garden beds and spraying his unamused classmates with the hose, Gnome reaps what he sows: “At recess, no one would play with him. And at the end of the day, no one said good-bye.” Suddenly Gnome is a lot more sympathetic, but Anstee (Are We There, Yeti?) emphasizes that apologies, however heartfelt, won’t be enough; the only way to repair the social fabric is for Gnome to roll up his sleeves and get the garden looking gorgeous again. While the story doesn’t plumb great emotional depths, Anstee’s bright, retro illustrations effectively convey what’s both funny and wrong when Gnome goes wild. And most children will know a Gnome—or know that they’re capable of Gnome-like behavior from time to time. Ages 4–8. Agent: Kelly Sonnack, Andrea Brown Literary Agency. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 11/02/2015
Release date: 02/09/2016
Genre: Children's
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