________________ CM . . . . Volume XIII Number 6 . . . . November 10, 2006


Best Friends, No Matter What. (Haley and Bix).   

Scott Higgs.
Toronto, ON: Scholastic Canada, 2006.
32 pp., cloth., $8.99.
ISBN 0-439-94725-1.

Subject Headings:
Best friends-Juvenile fiction.
Friendship-Juvenile fiction.
Separation-Juvenile fiction.  

Grades 1-3 / Ages 6-8.

Review by Tanya Boudreau.  

**** /4 


Haley had a stuffed puppy named Scraps. Scraps had pine needles stuck in his fur. He smelled a bit like peanut butter and old socks.  

Bix had a stuffed puppy named Jessie Flower. Jessie Flower always looked perfect. Once a month Bix gently wiped her clean with a soft cloth.  

Bix is Haley’s opposite. Bix dresses with trendy sophistication. Her hair is neatly parted and held in place by flower barrettes. After playing with her stuffed dog, Jessie Flower, he’s still clean and in near mint condition. Haley, on the other hand, wears mismatched socks. (Although maybe she did this on purpose, so each sock matches a stripe of color on her too short t-shirt?) Not one hair is flat or held in place on Haley’s head, and her stuffed dog, Scraps, has seen better days. Playtime is hard on him! Haley and Bix are the very best of friends though, but best friends with a huge problem! An ocean is going to divide them shortly. Bix is moving to Italy for one year. With their minds running, they come up with some comical and crazy ways out of their separation crisis. Nevertheless, the real solution that works, works for both of them in the end.  

internal art

     Haley and Bix (with a purple flowered “I” in Bix) are tied together in a skipping rope on this pink cotton candy colored covered book. Their stuffed dogs are in the same boat too! Inside, the text and illustrations do not crowd the pages. And the pictures perfectly reflect the text! To illustrate Bix’s being tidy and enjoying the quiet life, she is shown sitting crossed legged on a pretty blanket, cleaning rocks with a toothbrush. The fresh rocks are lined up on the blanket around her, drying. Haley and Bix’s ideas for staying together are funnier when you see the illustrations. The failed dog sled trip picture is the funniest by far. The attention to detail seen in the drawings further reflects each girl’s personality. Their stuffed dogs have their own labeled water dish. The name Scraps looks as if it was written free-hand, with the last S being backwards. Jessie Flower’s name is in cursive, with a flowery dot over the “I”. This story, full of vivid colors and clear, clean illustrations, centering around two strong and happy young girls, will not disappoint.  

     Scott Higgs has written a superb book about friendship, especially an exceptional friendship in Haley and Bix that, despite hurdles, can continue. This book is a reminder to appreciate and remember our friends.  

Highly Recommended. 

Tanya Boudreau is the librarian at the Cold Lake Public Library in Cold Lake, AB.  

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

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ISSN 1201-9364
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