Wednesday, August 08, 2018

Taming the Beast Within! Allie All Along by Sarah Lynne Reul

It's a bummer when you break the first one from a new box of still sharp and shiny crayons. But to her big brother, Allie's reaction seems over the top.

She was suddenly...



and SOOO


Allie is transformed into a scowling, shaggy, three-toed red monster who throws herself on the floor and howls, in the throes of a full-fledged FIT!

Her big brother tries letting her punch his pillow. That helps, and Allie turns into a slightly smaller shaggy orange critter--but she's still raging--and still scary. Her brother hands her a favorite lovey to squeeze, and her anger eases. Allie turns green, but she's still enraged.

Big Brother tells her to count to ten and blow as hard as she can, and she shrinks into a smallish and blustery beastie--with a case of the blues. And after a therapeutic countdown from ten to one, Allie morphs into her true self, a little girl, a very sad little girl.


Big Brother tapes the two parts of her broken blue crayon together, and all's well that ends well, in Sarah Lynne Reul's just-published Allie All Along (Sterling Books, 2018). It's easier to tame the beast within when there's help at hand, and in Ruel's illustrations, with the raging Allie's anger featured in a full-bleed two-page spread, youngsters will see the irate Allie gradually calm down as the colors progress from a hot red, to orange, to green to a cool blue, set spot-art style on bright white background, until the two siblings share a hug. Artist Reul's endpapers show first the beautiful, brand-new blue crayon broken and complete the book with the finally fixed blue crayon with the tape dispenser beside it, proving the premise that there's always something to do to make things better.

Share this one with Molly Bang's classic Caldecott-winning When Sophie Gets Angry-Really, Really Angry… (Scholastic Bookshelf).

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