My New Friend Is So Fun!

My New Friend Is So Fun!

Book - 2014
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Gerald the elephant and Snake fear that Piggie and Brian Bat will have so much fun together they will no longer need their best friends.
Publisher: New York :, Hyperion Books for Children,, c2014.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 9781423179580
Branch Call Number: JE WILL
Characteristics: 57 pages : color illustrations ; 24 cm

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ksoles Jan 14, 2015

"My New Friend is So Fun" contains everything readers have come to love about Mo Willems's Elephant and Piggie series: appropriate pacing, fun colour-coded speech bubbles, animated body language and humourous but sensitive text. Unfortunately, this one falls short in its conclusion.

When Snake tells Gerald of Piggie's playdate with Brian Bat, Gerald responds with acceptance: "Brian is nice." But their mutual reflection that Piggie and Brian “must be having a super-duper fun time!” soon turns to paranoia when they realize that maybe their best pals don't need them anymore. The pair rush to put an end to the fun and find out that Piggie and Brian have been playing "best friend games” which, it turns out, means making drawings of their respective best friends, Gerald and Snake. Cue the cheesy music.

While the buildup to the friends’ confrontation shows off Willems's characteristic comedy, the story's resolution feels anticlimactic and unrealistic. Willems teaches the value of making new friends but how many young children, when playing with a new pal, are likely to spend their time thinking of the friends that they are not playing with?

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