Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

Parents' Choice Awards : Books : Picture Books
Clever Beatrice

Clever Beatrice

Fall 2001 Picture Books
Ages: 4 - 8 yrs.
Author: Margaret Willey
Illustrator: Heather Solomon
ISBN: 0689832540
Hardcover Price: $16.00
What child hasn't, at one time or other, longed for the power to defeat a neighborhood bully or even win a battle of words with an over demanding parent? Clever Beatrice features a feisty, small heroine who outsmarts a dimwitted but surprisingly polite and appealing giant. The heroine is in need of money to buy food for herself and her impoverished mother. The giant possesses a large fortune in gold coins. At Beatrice's suggestion, the ill-matched pair engages in three contests testing brute strength, all of which the heroine wins by force of intelligence rather than muscular might. Many a youngster will end up sympathizing with the giant as he loses all his worldly wealth. This improvisation on several folk tales from Michigan's upper peninsula is handsomely illustrated in bold watercolors with collage elements. All told, it's a droll and lively work.
Selma G. Lanes   ©2001 Parents' Choice

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