From Publishers Weekly
Although not as affecting as their Somebody Loves You, Mr. Hatch , Spinelli and Yalowitz's latest collaboration blithely encourages readers to follow their dreams. Young Tony loves to do nothing but dance; his father, however, a brilliant chef, wants him to have a culinary future. The lad gamely chops carrots and peels potatoes at his father's restaurant, but inevitably ends up tripping the light fantastic around the kitchen. Luckily, Tony gets his big break before breaking too many plates: One of the evening's dinner-theater troupe can't make the show, and Tony triumphantly fills in, impressing his father at last. Spinelli follows the classic storyline of the underappreciated artist, yet commendably shows no antagonism between Tony and his patient, well-meaning father. Yalowitz's round-faced characters, whose skinny arms and legs grandly gesture from ballooning clothes, are rendered with precision and shaded in delicate, grainy textures. While this benign tale of youthful talent and parental approval provides few surprises, it's a very model of warmhearted optimism. Ages 4-7.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From Kirkus Reviews
Stevens puts a time-honored message in a buoyant new setting: Tony's father is a hotel chef who expects Tony to become a chef, too; he has no sympathy with his son's greatest interest- -dancing--which he's done constantly since before he could walk. On the school bus, in the bathtub, and, most disruptively, when his father assigns him kitchen duties, Tony dances, juggling lemons, flinging carrots, tap-dancing through a mountain of potatoes--all deliciously depicted in Yalowitz's mock-solemn art. Then the hotel has an emergency shortage of one dancer for a gala banquet; while Dad cooks a delicious feast, Tony saves the show (in a parody of a school production with kids dressed as veggies) and wins his praise. Spinelli's narrative is lively with dialogue and comical slapstick details, entertainingly depicted in Yalowitz's signature style: nearly flat modeling; expressions evoked with the tiniest of features; people and objects, in arrested motion, across carefully designed spreads in lighthearted colors. Good fun. (Picture book. 4-8) -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.