Publishers Weekly - Publisher's WeeklyGreat-Aunt Martha is coming to visit, which, to this book's less-than-ecstatic narrator means that "I had to pick up every single toy." But that isn't the worst of it. Instead of pizza and pretzels, Mama buys fish, spinach and prune juice at the store and forces the girl to take a bath. The day Aunt Martha arrives is a total drag: when the visitor goes to her room, Mama and Papa decree a ban on watching TV, listening to music, playing with friends and frolicking with the dog-``because Great-Aunt Martha [needs] her rest.'' But the following day, when the family hears a tapping noise in their guest's room, they discover Great-Aunt Martha dancing with her cane. "This place is too quiet! Let's make some noise and have some fun!" declares the spirited woman, who kicks up her sneaker-clad heels and orders pizza for all. While shattering an undeserved stereotype, Jones's (Matthew and Tilly) pithy tale also offers a heartening glimpse of three-generational joie de vivre. Debut artist Jackson's illustrations are marked by vibrant colors and varied perspectives. Her characters' expressive faces convincingly move from frustration to jubilation. Ages 4-8. (June)
Children's Literature - Judith GravitzGreat-Aunt Martha is visiting-and she needs her rest. Told through the eyes and heart of a young girl, this realistic tale chronicles the impact of Great-Aunt Martha's visit upon the daily routines of the narrator. Jackson's pastel-like drawings depict the anticipation of fun activities-dancing playing with a friend, watching television: only to have all plans canceled because "Great-Aunt Martha was here and she needed her rest." The drawings are set on facing pages, showing the before and after affects. After a series of such plans are thwarted, it is revealed that the little girl is not the only one bored by "rest." A gently ironic tale.
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