I Feel Five!

I Feel Five! illus. by Bethanie Deeney Murguia. 32p. Candlewick. Aug. 2014. Tr $14.99. ISBN 9780763662912. LC 2013952832.
PreS-Gr 1—Looking forward to his fifth birthday, Fritz leaps out of bed in his supercape. However, much to his dismay as the day wears on, he doesn't feel as differently as he had hoped. He still can't tie his shoes or snap his fingers. The satisfying conclusion shows that it often takes just one friend to cheer up a child after a day that didn't seem to live up to expectations. Lively artwork rendered in pen and ink and watercolor enhances the simple lines used for facial features. Murguia employs excellent pacing by using a varied perspective, such as the anticipation created during the pause in the narrative with a view of two pairs of shoes meeting on the playground—one pair of reddish-orange sneakers and another pair of red flowery pumps. Although this simple story can get lost in a plethora of other supplemental friendship tales, the illustrations set it apart.—Blair Christolon, Prince William Public Library System, Manassas, VA
Having eagerly anticipated the day he turns five, Fritz feels deflated that he still can't tie his shoelaces, whistle, or swing across two monkey bars at a time. He learns, however, that he can do other things, such as pick apples from a low tree branch for a new friend. Poignant text and hushed watercolor and pen-and-ink illustrations convey much tenderness.

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