The Big Bad Lies (The Rizzlerunk Club) by Leslie Patricelli

The Big Bad Lies (The Rizzlerunk Club) by Leslie Patricelli. Candlewick Press, 2022. 9780763651053 

Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 3

Format: Hardcover

Genre:  Realistic fiction

What did you like about the book? Lily and Darby are best friends, but can their friendship survive a lie? Sunny Hills Elementary is exciting as Mrs. Larson’s class begins a new science experiment with live rats! It is also trying, as a new student, Deet, enters the class and has a tendency to lie.  He lies about most everything and becomes a bully. At the same time, a piglet is purchased by Lily’s parents to raise for eating.  Lily is convinced that she must save the pig, keep her friendship, and figure out why Deet tells his never-ending tall tales. Themes, such as honesty and not judging others will not be lost on even the youngest readers. Large fonts and illustrations scattered through the text are sure to make this a hit with struggling reads. 

Anything you didn’t like about it? The theme is a little heavy-handed as each chapter includes a new lie and the consequences. The storyline bounces around, which could be confusing for some readers.  The main characters talk about boys in a way that seems a little old for this age group.

To whom would you recommend this book? Readers, in grades 2 to 4, who enjoy tales that include the consequences of telling lies, such as Sam Tells Stories, would like this title.  

Who should buy this book?This would be a good purchase for elementary schools or public libraries that are looking for books on the importance of honesty and accepting others.

Where would you shelve it? Realistic Fiction

Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? I feel that this title would reside at the middle of the “to read” pile.

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City and State: Elena Schuck, Nathaniel H. Wixon School Library, Dennis, Massachusetts

Date of review: February 25, 2022

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