cover image First Grade King CL

First Grade King CL

Karen L. Williams. Clarion Books, $13.95 (119pp) ISBN 978-0-395-58583-2

Reminiscent of the classic Ramona series, this tale chronicles the joys and struggles of early school experiences. Joey King can hardly wait to start first grade, where he will learn how to read and have real homework, just like his older brother. Joey loves his teacher Mrs. Fulks, but the class bully taunts him daily. Suddenly school is not what the boy had expected--``Everything was different in first grade. They didn't have any morning snack and no playtime. Ronald Boyd kept poking Joey in the back and calling him King and King Kong. Thinking about it made Joey's stomach hurt.'' A perceptive substitute teacher helps him find a solution and ultimately adjust to his first encounter with academia. An ideal read-aloud for first-graders, this humorous, thoughtfully written account conveys the anticipation and anxiety children experience when they begin school. Readers will easily identify with Joey and find his story both reassuring and entertaining. Ages 5-8. (Mar.)