cover image Shoes from Grandpa

Shoes from Grandpa

Mem Fox. Orchard Books (NY), $14.95 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-531-05848-0

This talented Australian author's most recent picture books, Koala Lou and Night Noises , have both won kudos, and her latest effort is equally praiseworthy. When Jessie's grandfather notices how much she's grown, he offers to buy her some new shoes for winter. Spurred on by Jessie's delight at the gift--a pair of fire-engine-red boots--one by one the whole family gets in on the act. In a cumulative rhyme reminiscent of ``The House that Jack Built,'' each relative promises something to go with the new boots: socks, mittens, a sweater and so on. Jessie appreciates their generosity, but finally she has to tell the truth--that what she really needs is a new pair of jeans. Practically begging to be read aloud, this exuberant collaboration is firmly rooted in happy family life, and Mullins's collages give the domestic scenes an enticingly hip look. Ages 3-6. (Mar.)