Saturday, November 7, 2015

Second Banana by Keith Graves -- OPTIONAL

Graves, Keith Second Banana. PICTURE BOOK. Roaring Brook Press, 2015. $17.99.

Oop is used to his life as a circus assistant. What he really wants, though, is to be a star like Bubbles, the self-important monkey who does all the best tricks. Then one day Bubbles stubs his toe and refuses to perform. Oop is all too happy to step in, but things don't go quite according to plan.

This is a cute story, and it's fun to see Oop finally fulfilling his dream, even if he has to do it in a clownish way instead of being elegant like Bubbles. Unfortunately, it's a bit hard to sympathize with Oop at the end when he pulls a Bubbles and dubs someone else "second banana." Perhaps a more empathetic ending could have boosted the story a bit.

EL (K-3) -- OPTIONAL. Reviewer: Caryn

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