From School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2—There's nothing like a day at the seashore. The gifts offered up by the restless ocean are always magical and stimulating—who knows what might be dreamt up and built. Of course, getting to the beach can often be a wearing process, and in this amusing story, a young girl decides that she must take her piano on her family's outing. Magnolia will not be deterred by the instrument's size or inappropriateness; she will bring it, and her busy mother finally consents by demanding that she "better not lose it!" Although initially this seems a far-fetched possibility, before long that is exactly what happens. How the piano ends up drifting out to sea and how Magnolia finally discovers the pleasure of finding shells make for a charming and hilarious story. Parsley highlights the joy, determination, and unreasonableness of young children and how parents can capitulate to the demands of their kids in order to achieve peace and provide them with a special experience. Her strong lines and bright colors are perfect for a book about the beach, but it is her expressive faces that will captivate readers. With just a few lines, Parsley conveys the many emotions of childhood, from excitement to frustration to contentment to dismay. VERDICT This humorous selection about willful and exuberant Magnolia is perfect for storytime or one-on-one sharing, especially when preparing for a trip to the beach.—Sally James, South Hillsborough Elementary School, CA
Praise for If You Ever Want to Take a Piano to the Beach, Don't!:
"Magnolia's voice is wonderfully childlike... her facial expressions top all, perfectly capturing both her exuberance and her mood swings. A delightful demonstration of just one of many things not to take to the beach; the brainstorming possibilities are endless."―Kirkus ReviewsPraise for If You Ever Want to Bring an Alligator to School, Don't!:
"Parsley's digitally created illustrations brim with energy and just-edgy-enough humor... and the well-chosen school-day details in both the artwork and text... deliver a steady stream of laughs."
[It] revels in the rampage of the id-here in the form of a formidable and toothy crocodilian. Elise Parsley's jaunty second-person narration is matched by comically expressive and detailed digital artwork that seems to shout from the page."―Wall Street Journal
"Children are likely to get a kick out of Magnolia's not-quite-contrite tone and the colorful chaos her giant pet creates."―New York Times
"This is an engaging debut picture book [that] will appeal to a wide age range. Here's hoping for more adventures with Magnolia!"―School Library Journal