Monday, February 25, 2013

Picture Book Monday - A review of Miss Annie: Freedom!

Young children and animals often believe that they are ready to do many, if not all, of the things that the "big kids" or grownups do. Children try to cook something and set food on fire They take clocks and other machines apart thinking that they will be able to put them back together. Kittens climb trees that they cannot figure out how to come down, and puppies pick fights with animals much bigger and tougher than they are.
   In today's graphic novel title you will meet a kitten who is determined to go out into the big world because she is convinced that she knows how to manage out there as well as she manages in her house.

Frank Le Gall
Illustrated by Flore Balthazar and Robin Doo
Graphic Novel
For ages 7 to 10
Lerner, 2012, 978-0-7613-7884-6
Miss Annie is a five month old kitten and she is convinced that she is old enough to do just about anything, and yet her people will not let her go outside. While her master walks in the park looking for inspiration, and her mistress works in an office, and her young mistress goes to school, Annie walks around the house looking for something to do. She plays with a pen, shreds a leaf from a flower arrangement, and finds a mouse. A live mouse.
   For some reason, though the mouse knows that mice are eaten by cats, and though Miss Annie knows that cats are supposed to eat mice, the mouse and Miss Annie become friends. When everyone is asleep that night Miss Annie gives the mouse a name and she tells the mouse all about her ambitions to go outside. Keisha the mouse cannot understand why Miss Annie would want to do such a thing. After all, “Outside is BIG and DANGEROUS.” Miss Annie is positive that she will be fine outside, but when she actually goes outside, she learns that she still has a lot to learn.
   All too often young creatures, including cats and humans, think they know everything there is to know. If they are lucky someone kind comes along who helps them realize that we never stop having to learn about the world we live in.
   With wonderful comic illustrations and a sensitive, sweet, and gently funny story, this graphic novel will appeal to readers of all ages.

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