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Brontorina
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
James Howe, the popular children's book author of some 80 books for young readers, has crafted a captivating tale that reminds us of what may happen when we hold fast to our dream.

Brontorina wants to dance, she wants to become a ballerina. Well, she has all the enthusiasm and determination in the world but not much else. She's way too tall, too big, and too heavy - she's a dinosaur. Where in the world could a dinosaur even find toe shoes?

Nonetheless, Madame Lucille, proprietor of Madame Lucille's Dance Academy for Boys and Girls, immediately recognizes that Brontorina is a ballerina in her heart and invites her to join the class.

Well, despite Brontorina's best efforts you can imagine the effect this had on other class members and, goodness, when Brontorina leaped she hit the ceiling. Obviously, the dance studio space was way too small.

However, as we know for every problem very often there's a solution. Young readers will be delighted to discover how with the help of Madame Lucille and her friends Brontorina is able to make her dream come true.

Highly recommended.

- Gail Cooke
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on October 27, 2010
Brontorina covers acceptance, rejection, being yourself, differences, and following your dreams quite beautifully. When Brontorina enters Madame Lucille's Dance Academy she is met with warmth and curiosity. But she's also met with a little bit of an attitude by two girls who just can't seem to find anything nice to say. It's like they want her to fail. They have a very minor role but I pointed out their put-downs. A kiddo said, "They are trying to stand in front of her dream!" Luckily, there are two other dancers, Clara and Jack, who want nothing more then to help her succeed. We need to lift each other up - not cut each other down. This was a well received message thanks to Brontorina. Major kudos to the author for picking a dinosaur to be a ballerina. This kept both boys and girls engaged. The last illustration got a heartwarming "AHHHHHH" from all the students. Oh, and from me too! As an elementary school counselor, it's refreshing to find books like Brontorina.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
I loved this story! Brontorina Apatosaurus is a dinosaur who just has to dance. After all,she has the name of a ballerina doesn't she? I loved Madame Lucille's attitude of acceptance and Brontorina's steadfast refusal to give up on her dream. I even liked the snarky girls on the sidelines that kept commenting on how she didn't have the right shoes. The illustrations are simple and adorable, giving Brontorina just the perfect amount of innocence and charm that will have every reader rooting for her. The ending, which shows just how far Madame Lucille was willing to go to make sure that Brontorina could dance, is a testament to inclusiveness. In the end, she even gets the right shoes. This is a perfect choice for preschool and kindergarten groups as a read aloud, and can be used effectively to promote discussions about acceptance. Recommended
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on March 16, 2011
I came across this book while looking for other books Randy Cecil has illustrated (we loved his 'We've all got belly buttons'). This is my 21 month old's favorite book. Granted, this is for older children but my daughter enjoys being read to and loves the emotion in this book. As a parent reading the book to her (many times a day) I'm nowhere near being sick of the book; Randy Cecil's illustrations are beautiful and James Howe's text is just enough, so we hover on each page talking about what else is going on.
I hope this book will teach my daughter acceptance of people no matter their differences and the determination to hold on to her dreams. Can't recommend this book enough!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon February 12, 2011
Mashing together the words Brontosaurus and Ballerina produces nothing but wacky fun in Howe's I have a dream story. Despite the obvious obstacles of size, Brontorina must also overcome perceptions of what is acceptable, or likely as she pursues her dream to be a ballerina. Her heart wins over her doubters, and through friendship and acceptance she achieves her dream.

Great story to kickoff the study of famous Americans, citizenship, friendship, and goal setting.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on March 17, 2012
I first checked this out from the library and after reading it to my twin 4 year old girls...who love-love-love anything ballet, I jumped on Amazon to buy a copy for our home shelf. The characters are strong, the story is well written, and the ending is very cute and satisfying. Love the voice of this story.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on August 22, 2011
James Howe does it again with a story that is perfect for 3 year olds as well as 30 year olds. A sweet and funny story about the ballerina in all of us.
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on December 8, 2010
This book is one that kids really relate too. I've used it with kindergarten students up to 4th grade and they all find it truly endearing. The story is at times funny, sad and inspiring as Brontorina follows her dream to be a dancer encountering difficulties along the way. There are so many "big ideas" to get at such as: following a dream, being different, problem-solving, acceptance and determination. When discussing how Brontorina was different from the other dancers, I had a kindergartener proclaim, "But we're all different!" How's that for profound thinking! Love this book and highly recommend it!
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on December 11, 2010
When a dinosaur dares to dance, she comes to Madame Lucille to be a ballerina. However, Brontorina does not fit in to Madame Lucille's Dance Academy. She is too big, and she has no shoes. But, one of the mothers of her classmates outfits Brontorina with ballet shoes. And then, Madame Lucille's Dance Academy moves to the outdoors, with space and shoes for all sizes. Showing that dreams can come true, this whimsical story will appeal to children ages 3-6, especially girls.
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on November 14, 2011
My 3 year old boy loves this book. I like the story and the cute illustrations. It's got some great messages - ignore your critics, persevere and follow your dreams, don't judge based on appearances, how to problem solve, etc. But, it presents these messages without being preachy or obnoxious.

I also like that it appeals to kids of either gender. My son knows nothing about ballet, but he does like dinosaurs, so he's able to relate.

A very sweet, well-done book.
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