CM . . .
. Volume XXII Number 11. . . .November 13, 2015
Children and adults alike will relate to Prickly Jenny, by Sibylle Delacroix. Jenny is having a very grumbly day. She wakes up in the morning out of sorts, and the feeling follows her all day, from breakfast to the fair to nap time. She wants her old shirt, not her new dress. She doesn't want ice cream, but she eats it anyway. She wants her mom to leave her alone, but she cries when she leaves. If she smiles and anyone points it out, she will go back to being grumpy. Jenny is in a complicated mood that she doesn't want to talk about; she just wants to be loved. Jenny grumbles through the day to vent her frustrations, but, at the end of this story, she realizes that each day, as she gets older, things will get better.
Prickly Jenny is a charming story of a young girl who is wrestling with conflicting emotions. Everyone has a day like this periodically, and Delacroix captures this experience beautifully. The overarching messages, that sometimes a person has a bad day and just needs some love, as well as that tomorrow will be a better day, shine through without being didactic. The language used in the story is at an appropriate level for the target audience, although adults may have to explain some of the terms used to describe Jenny's mood, terms such as 'grumbles', 'out of sorts', or 'fuss'.
Carla Epp is a hospital librarian with the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, MB.
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