cover image LIZZY'S DO'S AND DON'Ts


Jessica Harper, , illus. by Lindsay Harper duPont. . HarperCollins, $15.95 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-06-623860-9

In their third book, this sister duo (I'm Not Going to Chase the Cat Today!) offers testimony to the values of positive reinforcement. The relationship between pigtailed Lizzie and her mother spirals into an unproductive duel of "don'ts." The parent's litany includes "Don't bring the sand home from the beach./ Don't feed the kitty cat a peach./ Don't, don't, don't!"—while Lizzie's list of don'ts for her mother concludes, "Don't chat, chat, chat on the telephone./ Don't lick so much of my ice-cream cone./ Don't, don't, don't!" The premise borrows a page from David Shannon's No, David!, and the text here sometimes stretches to complete the rhyme. Although the artwork possesses an editorial cartoon quality that starts to wear thin, the illustrator alters the pacing with small and big boxes on the spreads, and by using the word "don't" as a graphic element, sometimes large, other times as a kind of wallpaper pattern. The book's resolution—with mom and daughter agreeing to plenty of "Dos" ("Do please let me keep the lizard./ Do take me sledding in a blizzard./ Do, do, do!") accentuates the positive. Ages 4-8. (Apr.)