Baloney and Friends 1
by Pizzoli, Greg

Told through comics-style panels, a new series by the Geisel Medal-winning creator of The Watermelon Seed introduces a piggy protagonist who performs questionable magic, braves the swimming pool and gives support to a friend. 25,000 first printing. Illustrations.

Greg Pizzoli is the creator of the Baloney & Friends series as well as a three-time Theodor Seuss Geisel Award recipient for The Watermelon Seed (Medal winner), The Book Hog (Honor book), and Good Night Owl (Honor book). He is also the author-illustrator of This Story Is for You, The 12 Days of Christmas, Templeton Gets His Wish, and Number One Sam. His nonfiction for children includes the New York Times Best Illustrated Book The Impossible True Story of Tricky Vic: The Man Who Sold the Eiffel Tower, and he has also illustrated picture books written by authors such as Mac Barnett, Kelly DiPucchio, Jennifer Adams, and Margaret Wise Brown. He lives in Philadelphia.

Baloney is-if you couldn't guess-a pig, and though he's headlining this book, he's happy to make room for a few friends, including the empathic Peanut (horse), the sensible Bizz (bee), and the grumpy Krabbit (scowling rabbit). Through multiple stories and mini-comics, they tackle magic shows, swimming, stealing cookies, courage, and the cure for sadness (friendship, of course) with a wild exuberance that will draw young readers right in. The breathlessness of the stories is given form in brightly colored, big-eyed characters, who are always either moving or emoting and who exude clear, accessible personalities. Pizzoli has managed to bring his picture-book energy into comics form with a zing, and he's done one better by composing pages of large panels with just one or two word balloons each, making this the rare comic that serves as a fun and easy read-aloud. A sure bet for Elephant and Piggie fans who are ready for the next step up or want to make the move to comics. Preschool-Grade 1. Copyright 2020 Booklist Reviews.

A new chapter-book series promises tons of fun for everyone. Baloney the pig couldn't be happier about starring in his very own book—until pals Peanut D. Horse, Bizz E. Bee, and Krabbit (a crabby rabbit) crash the introduction, leaving him frustrated. Baloney perseveres and goes on to star in several, short comic book-style stories that often break the fourth wall and that always rely on the very different personalities of the characters to deliver humor. Peanut is a Pollyanna and just a bit daffy. Bizz is a sensible, thoughtful bee-ing. Krabbit is so crabby he'd give Oscar the Grouch a run for his money. Baloney? Well, Baloney is a sensitive sort who, in two longer episodes, wants to entertain his friends with a magic show and join in their fun at swimming. Shorter "mini-comics" between these sections provide good breaks for new readers who are, perhaps, just starting to make their ways through a longer text like this. Pizolli saves the strongest story for last, delivering a sweet and satisfying portrait of Peanut's kindness to her friend Baloney when he feels blue. And readers needn't feel blue themselves that the story is over since they can follow handy backmatter instructions to draw their own versions of the simple, line-drawn characters. Here's hoping there will be a bunch of Baloney in the future. (Graphic fantasy. 5-8) Copyright Kirkus 2019 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.

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