From School Library Journal
Kindergarten-Grade 2-James is determined to be on his best behavior on the last day of school. Filled with exuberance, he bounces from page to page, offering a litany of things that he will do differently: "I'll get my drink at the drinking fountain 1, 2, 3 and not spit the water back out because it's warm." He hopes to impress Mrs. Bremwood and receive "the last gold star sticker for the year." At lunch, he'll "thank the lady who always smiles at me, and even the one with the grumpy face, and I'll tell them that it's a good lunch, even if it's not." After receiving a hug from his teacher, James literally explodes off the final page, ready for a long, hot summer of frolicking with his friends. The boy and his classmates are depicted in orange, sepia-based tones that give the book a feeling of times past, though the action in the bold oil paintings keeps the story rooted in the present. Use this title to supplement Mark Teague's How I Spent My Summer Vacation
(Knopf, 1997).-Lisa Gangemi Kropp, Middle Country Public Library, Centereach, NY
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
K-Gr. 2. James imagines the last day of school, when he'll do everything right for a change. He won't
talk to Tony in class or smash his milk carton at lunch or show off his ability to talk and burp at the same time. He will
thank the lady in the lunch line, do his work on time, and earn his teacher's final gold star sticker of the year. "And then . . . And then . . . I'll EXPLODE!!!!" The last two words of the book sound a bit alarming, but the illustration of James ecstatically catapulting out of school makes the meaning clear. James speaks for the many children who want
to do things right in school but find it hard to settle down. With a stylized, retro look, the expressive illustrations feature simplified shapes, well-defined compositions, and the rhythm of repeated forms. Useful for those end-of-the-year teacher requests. Carolyn PhelanCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved