Fanny and Margarita: Five Stories about Two Best Friends

Fanny and Margarita: Five Stories about Two Best Friends

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by Kate Spohn

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Following their debut in Introducing Fanny , this book marks the second appearance of Spohn's anthropomorphic pear and banana. These slight vignettes advise against superficiality but, less admirably, may promote in three- to eight-year-old girls a self-consciousness about their weight. Fanny--whose very name indicates a sizable bottom--possesses by her characterization the pear shape women have habitually bemoaned, while her best friend, Margarita, has the good fortune to be a tall, slender banana. The book's initial line, ``Fanny longs to be tiny . . . like Tinkerbell,'' appears innocuous until the book describes Fanny's eating binges (``I'm too fat and ugly and sad''); her realization that she does not have a ``dancer's behind''; and her rejection after writing a ``love letter'' to a boy. Each time, Fanny is consoled by Margarita, whose own insecurities are never mentioned. As in the first book, Spohn creates an idiosyncratic look by using delicate, whispery pencil outlines and muted hues. Readers understand that Fanny and Margarita care for one another, but the message about companionship is sadly undermined by preoccupation with Fanny's inferred flaws. Ages 3-8. (Mar.)
Hazel Rochman
Fanny's a pear and Margarita's a banana, but their fun and their sadness are decidedly human, and so is their friendship. Fanny would like to be a magical fairy, tiny and sparkly and able to fly, but she's a pear. Margarita, her best friend, encourages Fanny and cheers her up when she feels ugly and fat. Margarita makes Fanny feel better when she's depressed about overeating and comforts Fanny when she gets a crush on a boy who ignores her. The two best friends share jokes as they shelter from the rain. Together they practice learning to fly, and they don't care when the older kids snigger. Supportive Margarita is a role model who's just too good to be true, but the story's focus is on Fanny and her vulnerability. Both the words and the colored pencil illustrations are quiet and expressive, and the story of the outsider who finds she's not alone will touch kids where it hurts.

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Product Details

Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
10.26(w) x 8.37(h) x 0.37(d)
Age Range:
8 - 13 Years

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