A Balloon for Isabel

( 2 )


Balloons are bright and floaty and shiny and perfect.

More than anything else in the whole wide world, Isabel wants a balloon. Everyone will get one on Graduation Day—everyone except the porcupines, because Porcupines + Balloons = Trouble

But Isabel isn't going to settle for another boring bookmark. She has a plan. . . .

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Balloons are bright and floaty and shiny and perfect.

More than anything else in the whole wide world, Isabel wants a balloon. Everyone will get one on Graduation Day—everyone except the porcupines, because Porcupines + Balloons = Trouble

But Isabel isn't going to settle for another boring bookmark. She has a plan. . . .

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

ALA Booklist
“Entertainingly told and sweetly satisfying.”
ALA Booklist
"Entertainingly told and sweetly satisfying."
Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Poor Isabel. As graduation day approaches, when all of the other animals will get beautiful balloons, she and her friend Walter, appealing, well-dressed porcupines, are presumed to be too dangerous to have balloons. Isabel, who wants a balloon desperately, is not happy just to get another bookmark. So she tries to figure out a way to protect balloons from their quills and persuade their teacher to change her mind. She finally finds a clever solution, resulting in a happy graduation day. On the title page, our heroine is at her desk dreaming of a red balloon. On the next page is her drawing of her holding that balloon, with a big smile. Using gouache, Rankin supplies details of classroom life along with imagined scenes of happy times with balloons. Anxiety builds until Isabel's idea is a success. The anthropomorphic characters all join their smiling teacher, also a porcupine happy to have a balloon, in the end. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
K-Gr 2—On graduation day, every animal will receive a balloon—except for Isabel and Walter, because their quills don't mix well with inflatables. Their teacher promises them each a special graduation bookmark, but the young porcupines long for balloons. Iris sets out to design the perfect apparatus to shield their quills, and after several tries, she finds the perfect solution. Illustrations full of color and personality add to the story's depth and appeal. Authentic dialogue, a touch of humor, and Isabel's ingenious invention make this tale of desire and determination a keeper.—Amanda Moss Struckmeyer, Middleton Public Library, WI
Kirkus Reviews
A sweetly graphic demonstration that just a little ingenuity can resolve even the most daunting dilemmas. Ms. Quill's class is counting down the days until graduation, and Isabel and Walter, two porcupine friends, are feeling left out, knowing they will not receive balloons along with the rest of the animals in their class. Ms. Quill, a porcupine herself, warns the duo that balloons are not safe for them. Longing desperately for a balloon of her own, Isabel decides she will not settle for just another "lovely" bookmark. After some trial and error-and some of Walter's endless supply of candy (his father makes it), which provides both solution and subplot-Isabel's persistence and resourcefulness save the day. Now "pop proof," Isabel, Walter and, most of all, Ms. Quill are able to (safely) enjoy their own balloons on graduation day. The attention to detail in Rankin's illustrations adds humor and charm to the story (check out Isabel's extensive collection of brightly colored Mary Janes), and the vivid colors make the pictures pop-sure to delight even the prickliest of readers. (Picture book. 4-7)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780061779879
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 4/27/2010
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 343,576
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Lexile: AD510L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 8.80 (w) x 11.10 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Deborah Underwood is the author of The Quiet Book, illustrated by Renata Liwska, and Granny Gomez and Jigsaw, illustrated by Scott Magoon. She lives in San Francisco, California.

Ginger Foglesong Gibson is the author of numerous books for children, including the bilingual favorites ¡Fiesta!, Siesta, and ¡Bravo! She graduated from the University of Virginia with a degree in early childhood education, and now lives in Seattle, Washington.

Laura Rankin is the creator of The Handmade Alphabet, a Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor Book, and Ruthie and the (Not So) Teeny Tiny Lie. She is the illustrator of many other books for children, including A Balloon for Isabel, by Deborah Underwood. She lives in Easton, Maryland.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 2 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 14, 2011

    You will love Isabel and her quest for a balloon!

    LOVE this book! It is so well written and full of humor and emotions, that my 3 and 5 year old were able to understand clearly what was going on. The illustrations are so adorable and help make the story all the better. It is easy to fall in love with Isabel and all of her porcupine friends!
    -Frequent children's book reader

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 18, 2010

    Fantastic and Refreshing

    I picked this book up on a whim at the library and I'm going to order it very soon. I get so tired of reading rhyming and ridiculous animal tales, but was incredibly delighted to stumble upon this funny little yarn. There is adult humor that goes right over my three year old's head as this adorable porcupine plots a way to have balloons at her graduation. I'm always happy to be entertained right along with my kids when I'm reading to them so I thank the author and illustrator for that. The facial expressions on the animals are perfect and the ending is too creative. I only wish there were more children's books of this caliber.

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