cover image Tulips


Jay O'Callahan. Picture Book Studio Ltd, $14.95 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-88708-223-8

Twice a year Pierre visits his Grand Ma Mere in her grand Parisian house and plays tricks on the servants. The dowager is unruffled by the boy's shenanigans, however; perhaps because ``in the whole world, Grand Ma Mere loved two things best: Pierre, and her wonderful tulips.'' But on one eventful stay, Pierre--apparently bored with placing a toad in the gardener's boot and running the chambermaid's bloomers up the flagpole--decides to take on Grand Ma Mere and her tulips. How she and the servants foil him and take their revenge makes a neat and amusing denouement. Santini ( Santa's Secret Helper ) sets a 1920s mood with her muted, slightly satirical watercolors and deftly connects the foreground action with garden, street or other rooms with strong, diagonally organized perspectives. Story and art thus jointly contribute to this engaging period piece with a touch of slapstick. Ages 4-up. (Apr.)