Saturday, January 02, 2010

Geez, Louise: Louise the Big Cheese: Divine Diva by Elise Primavera

Louise liked the limelight; she liked a lot of fuss and more than anything else in the world she wanted to be the big cheese.

"DREAM BIG! That's my motto!" she said.

And then her chance comes. Mrs. Little announces tryouts for the title role in the class play, Cinderella. As princesses go, Cinderella is the big cheese,and Louise knows that this casting call can be the beginning of her career on stage and screen. At dinner she announces that she is probably going to leaving soon for a life as a Broadway star. Her parents say they'll be sad to lose her to the stage, but big sister Penelope says she'll be so glad to see her move out that she will give Louise her new tube of Divine Diva lipstick when she goes.

There's just one problem. Her best friend Fern is determined to try out for the part. Fern is sure she's got the right stuff:

"I would like to be Cinderella in the school play!" says Fern emphatically.

"I want to be Cinderella," said Louise.

"But I take dancing lessons!" argued Fern.

"I take dancing lessons!" said Fern.

"You do NOT!" said Fern.

"I do TOO!!" Louise said.

"Since WHEN?"

"Since NOW!"

But fate is fickle, and somehow Louise finds herself cast as a mouse, while Fern is indeed cast as the Big Cheese Cinderella. Louise is incensed and refuses to speak to Fern as they rehearse. Reluctantly, she decides to make the best of her role, and on the night of the performance, sister Penelope allows her to wear some Divine Diva lipstick for luck.

And it seems to be working:

The school play went along well. None of the scenery fell down like it kept doing in rehearsal. All the music came right on cue, and Louise's tail managed to stay on.

Louise didn't know if it was the Divine Diva lipstick, but she sang and danced better than she ever had before. Soon it was the grand finale.

Fern raised her arm to deliver her last lines and looked more like a big star than Louise ever could have imagined.

"Fairy Godmother," Fern announced, "um, um...." Fern looked terrified!

Louise, standing just behind Fern, realizes that the star of the show has forgotten her last line, and Louise realizes that she's the only one who can help her ex-friend out! What would a true diva do?

The show must go on, of course, and in Elise Primavera's newest, Louise the Big Cheese: Divine Diva, Louise proves to be a real trouper and a good friend after all. Diane Goode, Caldecott Honor winning artist (for When I Was Young in the Mountains (Reading Rainbow Books)) passes the audition here as well with illustrations which perfectly capture the aspirations of a Divine Diva wannabe. Fans of Fancy Nancy and Olivia will find Louise the Big Cheese: Divine Diva, sure to please.

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