Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 4
Genre: early reader/graphic novel
What did you like about the book? Norma and Belly are hungry squirrels who are drawn to a parking lot by the tantalizing smell of fresh donuts. There’s a truck there, with a grumpy (human) donut maker who sprays them with water when they try to buy a donut with a pile of chestnuts. That’s when they decide to take matters into their own paws, and concoct a scheme to infiltrate the donut truck and steal some treats. With the help of their Gramps (a master of disguise) and friend Little Bee (the getaway driver), the two pull off a donut heist. They bring their haul back to celebrate with a “donut donut par-ty!) with all their squirrel friends, leaving behind quite a mess in the truck for the donut man.
This action-packed comic adventure is a lot of fun. The color palette is simple and the design is uncluttered, making it easy for new graphic readers to follow. The squirrels come in different shapes and sizes so they are easy to tell apart. There’s a lot of onomatopoeia, and the funny dialogue is conveyed in speech bubbles. The book is long, but manageable since it is broken up into five chapters. There’s not a lot of character development – unlike in most ‘buddy’ stories where one friend is upbeat and the other nervous, for example – but it is the first in a new series so perhaps that will come. Kids love squirrels, and kids love donuts, so they will love this story!
Anything you did not like about the book? no
To whom would you recommend this book? 1st-3rd grade readers of easier graphic novels like Noodleheads or Chick and Brain will love this new series.
Who should buy this book? Public and elementary school libraries
Where would you shelve it? Early readers/graphic novels
Should we (librarians) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? no
Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City: Leigh Russell King, Lincoln Street School, Northborough, Massachusetts.
Date of review: 2/12/2021