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The Perfect Thanksgiving Paperback – October 2, 2007
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From School Library Journal
PreSchool-Grade 3-In this tale of two Thanksgivings, a young girl compares her own family's chaotic and less-than-genteel holiday celebration with that of another family, which "is perfect in every way." At that house, "Abigail Archer's father/serves white meat all around./Everyone takes dainty bites,/and no one makes a sound," while at her own home, "My grandpa chews the gizzards./My brother chomps the wings./My sister slurps. My uncle burps./And Aunt Clarissa sings." The jaunty, rhyming text continues to reveal the many contrasts between the two clans, until the final page, when the narrator points out one important similarity, highlighting "-just how loving/our different families are." Combining gouache, colored pencil, and collage, the mixed-media artwork extends the humor of the story. The child-friendly tone is set on the title page, which shows a close-up of the girl's arms, one hand tracing the other with a crayon. The resulting hand turkey, finished off with feathers and features, runs through the pages, taking part in the action and making sly comments. Whether reflecting the serenity at one household or the chaos at the other, the vivid double-page artwork is filled with action and energy. Colorfully clothed characters, vibrant backgrounds, and almost touchable textures make each page fresh and appealing. Filled with warm humor and taking a fresh approach, this title is the perfect antidote to ho-hum holiday books.
Joy Fleishhacker, formerly at School Library Journal
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
PreS-Gr. 2. The Archer family is perfect, especially on Thanksgiving, when their turkey is plump and golden, / their napkins are made of lace / their table is lit with candles / they all hold hands for grace." Meanwhile, at the narrator's house, the smoke alarm is wailing, the turkey is burnt, and Dad has spilled the gravy down his shirt. Spinelli goes to the well several times too often with her comparisons, as when the narrator's family "can't tell peas from green legumes / or snails from escargot," but kids who have noticed how celebrations can vary from house to house will identify with the point she makes. Adinolfi uses gouache, colored pencils, and collage on craft paper to create energetic pictures, which she peoples with geometrically shaped family members, who are either pursuing perfection or taking part in controlled chaos. Hand-printed asides add extra fun for kids old enough to read. Ilene Cooper
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top customer reviews
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This book is fantastic. The message my kids got from this book is that it doesn't matter if your family isn't perfect, as long as you are together Thanksgiving is perfect. The book goes back and forth between a "perfect" family's Thanksgiving and a "not-perfect" family's Thanksgiving.
I think it is important that children understand that no one's family is perfect, not even at Thanksgiving.
In response to the teacher that hated the book, maybe it would have been appropriate to pre-read the book and to have some answers ready for possible questions. We think the book is great!
"Their turkey is plump and golden.
Their napkins are made of lace.
Their table is lit with candles.
They all hold hands for grace."
In her house, the smoke alarm wails, sister slurps and uncle burps. Instead of homemade pie with fancy whipped-cream swirls, they have a Jell-O mold that wiggles off its plate and onto the floor.
Lighthearted paper-collage illustrations contrast the serenity of one family with the pandemonium of the other. Despite their differences, however, both families are alike in their love for one another.
Abigail Archer's mother wears pearls and bakes homemade pies. My mother wears blue jeans and her pies are from the store. Abigail's cousins read books on velvet chairs. My cousins hop atop the furniture while hollering. Abigail's turkey is plump and golden. My turkey is burnt like toast. Who has the perfect Thanksgiving?
I really like this book! It is silly but has such a great message. It doesn't mater that your Thanksgiving is not like you see in the movies. What matters is the love a family has for each other and THAT makes a Perfect Thanksgiving! The illustrations in the books are really great too, they are bright and colorful. The story is told in a nice rhyme and this is my pick for The Perfect Thanksgiving Book!