Roundabout: Maggie's Ball by Lindsay Barrett George
Maggie is a young, big-eyed, lop-eared pup with just one thing in mind--finding someone to throw her yellow ball for her. But then....
SUDDENLY...A MIGHTY WIND BOUNCES HER BALL DOWN THE HILL AND IT ROLLS....
WHERE IS MAGGIE'S BALL?
Downtown it's a whirl of activity. There is The Pizza Shop, T.T.'s Clock Shop, and Campbell's Critters, and The Market. Hey, wait! There is something round and yellow!
IS THAT MAGGIE'S BALL?
No! It's just a round dollop of frosting on the sign advertising cupcakes in the window. Is that round yellow thing over there her ball. No! It's a golden pocket watch on a chain on the vest of the happy man coming out of the clock shop.
IS THAT MAGGIE'S BALL UP THERE?
Nope. That's a pizza on the shop's sign! Suddenly Maggie realizes that there are round shapes everywhere--a circular perch for the parrot inside Campbell's Critters, a goldfish bowl in the window, spots on a slow-moving turtle, a ball of yarn that Kitty is chasing, the gerbil's exercise wheel, apples on a tree, a girl with a hula hoop and a round scoop of lemon ice cream on her cone, a bass drum, and, and, AND.... . How will Maggie ever spot her ball?
What's a sad pup to do?
Then Maggie spies a girl sitting on a bench in the park. And beside her on the ground... there is something round and yellow!
"HELLO, LITTLE DOG. DO YOU WANT TO PLAY WITH ME?"
Early readers, lap sitters, and story circle listeners will love helping Maggie spot that ball at last in Lindsay Barrett George's latest Maggie's Ball (Greenwillow, 2010). For kids learning colors and especially shapes, this one might be called a concept book: there are indeed circle shapes everywhere, all naturally integrated into bright, almost primitive-styled illustrations which are a departure from George's realistic nature pictures in such books as In the Woods: Who's Been Here? (Mulberry books). In this one George's flat primary colors and eye-catching pages show off her versatility and creativity in a book that combines a "do-you-see-it?" plot line with some solid preschool learning, beginning reader practice, and just plain fun.
Kirkus gives it a coveted starred review and says, “A consistent, directional progression of the story, large, easy-to-read type, the challenge of finding the characters and naming the objects and places, and the gentle, sweet ending make Maggie’s adventure a perfect title for young readers, who will want their own pup to play with by tale’s end.”