Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Almost a Picture Book: The Story of Diva and Flea

The Story of Diva and Flea as told and shown by Mo Willems and Tony DiTerlizzi

Mo Willems, famous for Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus and the Elephant and Piggie books (for the most part, great early reader books less intimidating then chapter books), brings us The Story of Diva and Flea, wonderfully illustrated by Tony DiTerlizza.

Diva is a sweet pampered little dog while Flea is a homeless adventurer. They overcome a misunderstanding early in the book to develop a friendship. I love the response when Flea brings an offering of apology to Diva: a dead mouse. Shocked and surprised, she demands to know who brought such a thing to her doorstep, but immediately changes her tone when Flea explains he's brought it to show how sorry he is.
Diva looked at the mouse and thought for a moment. Then she walked over to Flea and said, "That is the nicest thing anyone has ever done for me. But, in the future, bring me a small piece of ribbon, okay?"
Flea encourages and supports Diva as she learns to explore outside her garden. Diva in turn introduces Flea to life and love in a home.

My children are enamored of France at the moment, so Second Daughter will love the lovely two page spread of the Eiffel Tower and the occasional French word like flaneur. (I don't know how to make the French symbols on Blogger.)

Friendship, courage, trust, adventure, all in Paris. A fantastic addition to early reader shelves.

I'd probably introduce this book right after or along with the Henry and Mudge books. Second Daughter is a little ahead of that level, but we'll read this together anyway. Because of the French words, it's a good one to read along with a new reader.

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