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Don't Want to Go!

Overview

A resistant Lily discovers that new experiences don’t need to be scary in this engaging, deftly told story certain to resonate with young children.

One morning, Lily’s mom wakes up with a sore throat and achy head and needs to stay in bed. But Lily’s dad needs to go to work. Who will look after Lily? When Dad arranges for her to spend the day at Melanie’s house, Lily is none too happy. "Don’t want to go!" she says. Even though Melanie has a friendly dog named Ringo and a funny ...

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Overview

A resistant Lily discovers that new experiences don’t need to be scary in this engaging, deftly told story certain to resonate with young children.

One morning, Lily’s mom wakes up with a sore throat and achy head and needs to stay in bed. But Lily’s dad needs to go to work. Who will look after Lily? When Dad arranges for her to spend the day at Melanie’s house, Lily is none too happy. "Don’t want to go!" she says. Even though Melanie has a friendly dog named Ringo and a funny baby named Sam, Lily is shy and wants to sit under the table with her toy Bobbo. But maybe a chance to make silly collages, or feed Sam lunch, or hold Ringo’s leash might make her feel braver—and maybe she’ll start having so much fun she won’t want to leave at the end of the day! With illustrations that keenly convey emotion through the subtlest gesture, Shirley Hughes mines a familiar situation for its most genuine moments and creates a truly reassuring story for young children.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Lily, like most preschoolers, is a creature of habit. So when Mom's flu and Dad's job requires her to spend a day at the house of Melanie, a grown-up family friend she barely remembers, Lily is resistant; she repeats the book's title and "went all stiff and would not get out of the stroller." Melanie proves to be a diplomatic hostess, however, and gradually Lily warms up to her surroundings, giving new meaning to "Don't want to go!" in the end. Hughes's (the Olly and Me books) unadorned narration exudes empathy for the dislocated Lily (" ‘Don't want toast,' said Lily. She forgot to say thank you"). And her densely textured, saturated gouache images, which emphasize the connections between characters over environmental detailing, make a strong case that the right people can make any situation feel homey. Despite Melanie having a baby and dog to care for, her patience is unflappable, and Lily's gradual acceptance of the situation unfolds naturally and believably. Ages 3–5. (Oct.)
Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
One day, when Lily's mother is sick in bed and her dad has to go to work, he arranges for her to play at Melanie's house. Melanie has a boy named Jack and a baby named Sam. But no matter how her father tries to make this sound like fun, Lily is adamant. She just doesn't want to go. And when pushed there in her stroller she doesn't want to stay. Prepared to cry, she is distracted by a friendly dog named Ringo. She refuses any toast. But when Sam wants to play peek-a-boo, she has to laugh. While Sam naps, Melanie has Lily help her make a scrapbook. Lily then helps feed Sam lunch; then agrees to go pick up Jack from school if she can hold Ringo's leash. Back at Melanie's they play together. When Lily's dad comes to pick her up, guess what she says. Hughes creates character so real we can almost touch them. Gouache is combined with vibrant black brush lines with necessary setting details. Perhaps some youngsters will smile as they recognize themselves in this reassuring story. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
PreS-K—It's one of those days. Lily's mom is sick. Her dad has to work. "'Guess what!' says Dad. 'You're going to play at Melanie's house! Won't that be fun?'" Hughes's gouache illustrations, notable for their charming, colorful casualness, show Dad's forced cheerfulness and Lily's skepticism. "'Don't want to go,'" she protests. As Lily progresses from hiding under the table to participating in Melanie's household, young readers may well be thinking, that's not so bad, while adults wish that Melanie could be cloned and distributed worldwide. It's equally funny and predictable that when Dad comes to pick her up, Lily doesn't want to go. Hughes, one of the most beloved picture-book authors/illustrators in the world, is a master of understated, wry stories about the seemingly small incidents that loom large in a child's life. Her artwork looks unassuming and traditional but her brilliant layouts expertly mirror and emphasize every element in the text. While Don't Want to Go! contains a fair amount of text, it will capture the attention of preschoolers and kindergarteners when shared one-on-one and in small gatherings.—Susan Weitz, formerly at Spencer-Van Etten School District, Spencer, NY
Kirkus Reviews
Pleasantly predictable, this new offering from a veteran perfectly captures a typical childhood experience. Parents in particular will recognize young Lily's initial resistance to a change in her routine and chuckle at her eventual about face. With her stay-at-home mom sick in bed and her father heading to work, arrangements must be made for Lily's care. Her delaying tactics (first pouting, then losing her mittens) don't slow things much, and soon she finds herself hustled off to a friendly neighbor. She warms up slowly, but a cheerful baby and engaging puppy help the process considerably. By the time her father arrives at the end of the day, Lily's snuggled on the sofa with Ringo the dog and has changed her tune, if not her actual words. Plenty of repetition, including the title phrase, and lots of simple declarative sentences keep the relatively long text from dragging and enhance the charmingly child-like tone. Hughes's characteristic chubby-cheeked tots and slightly scratchy ink work further expand her tale's appeal. Familiar and comforting. (Picture book. 3-6)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780763650919
  • Publisher: Candlewick Press
  • Publication date: 10/12/2010
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 1,002,061
  • Age range: 3 - 7 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.20 (w) x 11.10 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Shirley Hughes is the illustrator of more than two hundred children’s books and has won many prestigious awards, including the Kate Greenaway Medal twice. She is the author-illustrator of THE CHRISTMAS EVE GHOST and OLLY AND ME 1 2 3. She lives in London.

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