cover image Diary of a Fly

Diary of a Fly

Doreen Cronin, , illus. by Harry Bliss. . HarperCollins/Cotler, $15.99 (40pp) ISBN 978-0-06-000156-8

Cronin and Bliss follow up their bestselling Diary of a Worm and Diary of a Spider with a heroine so delightful it would be criminal to swat her. Fly, a purple girl with multifaceted green eyes, chronicles her childhood, from anxieties about the first day of school (“June 7: What if I’m the only one who eats regurgitated food?... June 8: Everyone eats regurgitated food!”) to family issues (“July 23: I visited my aunt Rita today. She’s been trapped on the wrong side of a screen for a week”). Tips on flying, such as “Leap backward when taking off,” combine with grade-school concerns and problems of discipline. Fly’s babysitter, a ladybug, can’t manage Fly and her 327 brothers and sisters (“Mom says we were a lot easier to watch before we grew heads”), so she brings a hungry green frog and sits back to read Teen Bugs magazine. Because flies “beat their wings 200 times per second,” “can see in all directions at once” and have amazing aerial powers, Fly fantasizes about being a superhero, though her friend Spider notes, “Superheroes bend steel with their bare hands. You eat horse manure with your feet.” Bemused readers may be more inclined to agree with Worm, however, who reassures Fly that “the world needs all kinds of heroes.” Cronin’s spot-on humor and Bliss’s uproarious ink-and-watercolor panels make Fly—and this third outing in the series—both irresistible and undeniably super. Ages 4-8. (Sept.)