cover image Jake and Rosie

Jake and Rosie

Patricia Lillie. Greenwillow Books, $11.95 (24pp) ISBN 978-0-688-07624-5

Lillie's story begins well, with a genuine sense of what being ``best friends'' means to children, but ultimately, its emotional content is slight. Jake and Rosie are the same size and like to do the same things, so they decide to be twins, dressing identically except for their shoes. One day Jake knocks on Rosie's door, only to find that no one is home. Roughly half the book is devoted to Jake's desolation over this fact. Then Rosie returns from shopping with her mother--with new shoes just like Jake's. The illustrations are full of affection and capture child-like postures and expressions well, and, because the two friends are not only of different gender but also of different races, a nice lesson is implied. But the belabored focus on what seems a minor crisis-and-resolution makes this easy to put aside after one reading. Ages 4-up. (Mar.)