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The Busiest Street in Town Hardcover – October 13, 2009


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"I Don't Want To Be A Frog"
Hilarious dialogue between a feisty young frog and his heard-it-all-before father, young readers will identify with little Frog's desire to be something different, while laughing along at his stubborn yet endearing schemes to prove himself right. Find out more
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 3 - 7 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 2
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers (October 13, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0375840206
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375840203
  • Product Dimensions: 11.1 x 8.8 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,167,010 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Kindergarten-Grade 2—Traffic always moves at a frantic pace on Rushmore Boulevard. Two older women who are friends live on opposite sides of the street. Agatha Walker, frustrated with its pace, takes her easy chair and a batch of freshly baked gingersnaps and parks herself in the middle of the streaming vehicles. Her friend Eulalie Scruggs soon joins her with a card table and a Parcheesi set. Traffic starts to slow down and people stop by for a chat and cookies. Soon children come out to play in the street. People plant flowers by the curb. The once-busy thoroughfare has been changed into a neighborhood gathering place and no one is in a hurry to leave. The cheerful mixed-media illustrations are of varying sizes and encased in white. In the text, the sound words are bigger and bolder than the others, and fonts vary throughout. While the slow-down-your-life sentiment is sweet, it's not a pressing one for children.—Ieva Bates, Ann Arbor District Library, MI END

Review

"Rockliff’s gentle and sweet-spirited story of urban transformation is nicely complemented by McMenemy’s brightly colored and energetic mixed-media pictures."- Booklist Reviews

"Genuinely inspiring"- Publishers Weekly

"Simple and bright" - The New York Times Book Review

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By elizabeth j. braswell on May 31, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Every aspect of this book appeals to my five year old son, from the idea of turning a street into a playground to the gingersnap recipe, which he wants me to make. A lovely tale about taking your neighborhood and making it a great place to live.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Steven Schnell on May 31, 2011
Format: Hardcover
A fun story about taking back the streets and making them human again. Funny and warm, the kiddos love it.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By ticachica on May 26, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I loved this book. I thought the bright, colorful illustrations were reminiscent of books I enjoyed as a child. The themes of the joys of a slower lifestyle as well as how one person can make a difference were combined to produce a fun yet important book. Thanks Mara
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Aaron Wyckoff on November 1, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Agatha May Walker and Eulalie Scruggs, dear friends, live on opposite sides of the busiest street in town. When Agatha tries to visit her friend but is unable to cross due to traffic, what does she do? She drags her chair into the middle of the street.

I'm sorry, but even with a ton of explanation on why this is a VERY bad idea, I can still see a lot of young children wanting to try it. Add to that the fact that the story is just too unbelievable (and not in a good, zany way). Other than a few initial honks and yells, within a couple of pages everyone is okay with the enormous traffic snarl, even stopping to ask for a cookie or to join the ladies' game of Parcheesi.

The message of slowing down and enjoying life is a good one, but this book does not do it justice, and few children are likely to really grasp it anyway.

On the plus side, McMenemy's illustrations are well done, in a simple but colorful style, with clear progress and change from dark, cool colors at the beginning of the story to bright, warm colors at the end.

Overall, the book is okay (as long as your children understand why dragging a chair out into traffic is bad), but not one I would particularly recommend.
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More About the Author

Mara Rockliff is the author of many books for children, including THE GRUDGE KEEPER and CHIK CHAK SHABBAT (praised by Kirkus Reviews as "a warm, cozy and loving depiction of shared culinary traditions around an inviting table") as well as the award-winning picture books ME AND MOMMA AND BIG JOHN and MY HEART WILL NOT SIT DOWN. Under the pen name Lewis B. Montgomery, she wrote all twelve books in the popular Milo & Jazz Mysteries chapter book series. Rockliff is also the author of GET REAL: WHAT KIND OF WORLD ARE YOU BUYING?, a tween-friendly guide to the social and environmental impact of our shopping choices, which has become required reading in middle schools across the United States and around the world.

Rockliff's public speaking experience includes TV and radio as well as bookstores, libraries, schools, children's museums, writing workshops, book festivals, and state and regional conferences for teachers and librarians. She lives in eastern Pennsylvania with her family. Visit her online at mararockliff.com.