cover image The Horrible Play Date

The Horrible Play Date

Rachel Vail. Orchard Books (NY), $14.95 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-439-40627-7

A young dinosaur and his patient mother star in the Mama Rex and T chapter-book series for early readers by Rachel Vail, illus. by Steve Bjorkman, first published for the school market and now available to the trade. In the first tale, Mama Rex and T: The Horrible Play Date, T's best friend, Walter (a boy), arrives for a play date and the two turn T's room into a disaster. Mama Rex and T: Homework Trouble features T and his mother racing to do a school project at the last minute because T forgot to tell Mom about it sooner. In both cases, mother knows best, using subtle methods to bring about desired results. Bj rkman's ink-and-watercolor artwork, sometimes reminiscent of James Stevenson, lends a generally airy sense of motion to the proceedings. (Aug.)