Olivia the Spy – written and illustrated by Ian Falconer


 Olivia the Spy – written and illustrated by Ian Falconer, Atheneum Books for Young Readers, (9781481457958), 2017.

Format: Hardcover Picture Book

Rating: 1-5:  (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 4.5

What did you like about the book? Olivia is back! In this eighth book about irrepressible Olivia, the little pig with the big personality overhears her mom talking about her on the phone. Olivia decides to learn more… by spying. So she disguises herself as a lamp, a zebra rug, a painting, a photo. An eavesdropped conversation leads her to think she is being sent to a military school. Instead, she is relieved to find out her surprise trip is to the ballet. Olivia’s lines often start with “Mommy I know how to…” followed by her doing something incorrectly, and in a BIG way: she explodes blueberries out of the blender, her red socks turn the laundry pink, and for her grand finale, at the ballet she heads to the restroom by herself, but accidentally uses the stage door instead and ends up calmly walking across the stage mid-performance! New Yorkers, especially, should get a kick out of seeing their famous Lincoln Center transformed by highbrow pig art and artists.

Anything you didn’t like about it?  No.

To whom would you recommend this book?  Recommend to the many fans of previous Olivia books.

Who should buy this book? Public libraries.

Where would you shelve it?  Shelve with other Picture Books.

Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles?  Not necessary.

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City: Mary Melaugh, Marshall Middle School Library, Billerica, MA

Date of review:  6/2/17

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