Also available in Spanish as Escrito y dibujado por Enriqueta
A Junior Library Guild Selection
Reading books is fun . . . but what about making them? Armed with new colored pencils, Henrietta's ready to try. Peek over her shoulder as she draws the story of a brave young girl, a three-headed monster, and an impossibly wide world of adventure. Whether read aloud to a toddler or discovered by a young reader, Liniers' celebration of the creative process is sure to make everyone want to bring out their pencils.
Ricardo Siri Liniers, known as Liniers, is the author of Macanudo, a daily comic strip hugely popular in Argentina, now available in English. His US debut, The Big Wet Balloon, a TOON Book, was nominated for an Eisner Award and chosen as one of Parents' Top 10 Children's Books. He lives in Buenos Aires with his wife and three daughters, Matilda, Clementina, and Emma, whom he credits as inspirations for this book.
As this story-within-a-story begins, Henrietta has just received a new box of colored pencils. She starts right in, drawing and writing a story she calls "The Monster with Three Heads and Two Hats." In the uproarious, childlike style Liniers (The Big Wet Balloon) uses for Henrietta's work, the monster's heads look like three enraged jack-o'-lanterns. "It's nighttime... Emily's in bed," Henrietta imagines, drawing Emily staring with wide-open eyes. "I'm scaring myself..." Henrietta says. Throughout, Liniers documents the way that Henrietta is both the source of her creation and the object of its emotional force; when the monster meets an even larger monster, Henrietta reacts with a yell at what she's drawn. There's plenty of laughter, too, as when the monster complains about the size of Emily's wardrobe: "We've been looking for a hat in there for months." Henrietta explains to her cat, Fellini, "You see, the wardrobe was made in Narnia." Liniers's creation brims with the power of invention, and Henrietta's boldness (and her confidence in her own talent) inspires. A Spanish-language edition is available simultaneously. Ages 5-up. (Sept.)Copyright 2015 Publishers Weekly, LLC Used with permission.
Gr 2-4--Henrietta is a young girl who has just received a new box of colored pencils, which she describes as "owning a piece of the rainbow." And that is exactly how this book is illustrated, with bright, thickly applied colors in childlike drawings that reinforce the mood and action of the text. Liniers offers a book within a book; Henrietta is the author and illustrator of a story starring herself. In between panels, Henrietta consults her talking cat Fellini, who offers his sometimes philosophical advice and checks up on Henrietta's writing progress. Her story begins with a secret closet, much like the well known one from the Narnia series. To Emily's surprise, out pops a monster with three heads (but only two hats). The young author and My Favorite (her beloved stuffed animal) embark on a journey through the closet to help her monster friend find another hat, aided by an almost silent mouse who gives excellent directions and helps them escape from a big red monster. At one point, Henrietta is so invested in her artwork and the creation of her story that she scares herself (and perhaps a few sensitive readers as well.) The Spanish language version is just as delightful--perhaps even more humorous. VERDICT This title is sure to be a hit with emerging readers and young fans of graphic/cartoon stories during storytime or independent reading. --Martha Rico, El Paso ISD, TXCopyright 2015 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.