I Wanna New Room by Karen Kaufman Orloff, David J. Catrow |, Hardcover | Barnes & Noble
I Wanna New Room

I Wanna New Room

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by Karen Kaufman Orloff, David J. Catrow
     
 

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A hilarious companion to I Wanna Iguana.

Ever since their baby sister came along, Alex has been forced to share a room with his little brother, Ethan, and it's a nightmare. Ethan always breaks stuff, snores like a walrus, and sticks crayons up his nose. No hardworking, well-behaved, practically grown-up boy like Alex should have to put up with that!

Overview

A hilarious companion to I Wanna Iguana.

Ever since their baby sister came along, Alex has been forced to share a room with his little brother, Ethan, and it's a nightmare. Ethan always breaks stuff, snores like a walrus, and sticks crayons up his nose. No hardworking, well-behaved, practically grown-up boy like Alex should have to put up with that!

Writing letters to his mom convinced her to let him get his pet iguana, so Alex puts pencil to paper again, this time determined to get his own room. Though all of his powers of persuasion can't get his dad to expand the house, he does come through with a fun alternative to give Alex some space of his own.
 

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Young Alex strenuously objects to having to share a room with his younger brother Ethan now that Baby Annie has arrived. In a series of letters he exchanges with his mom and dad, Alex tries to make a case of a room of his own. But his dad just suggests a "heart-to-heart talk" with Ethan. Alex tries dividing the room, forgetting that Ethan has no door out. He and his dad continue the argument, as Alex insists on fair treatment as the "oldest and most important kid." When his dad finally admits that he needs his own space, Alex's dreams have no limits. In the end, however, they arrive at a solution. The blueprint of his own dream room on the end pages, overstuffed with items like a flight simulator, a twisting skateboard ramp, a bowling alley, a trampoline, and a shark tank, is balanced by the jacket/cover illustration of his sad longing when faced with his current situation. Pencil and watercolors create the comic characters and wacky objects that occupy the living spaces of the three siblings across the double pages. Those readers feeling displaced by additions to the family will appreciate the humor of Alex's attempts at justice in particular. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3—In this companion to I Wanna Iguana (Putnam, 2004), irrepressible Alex is back with a new entreaty—his own room, puh-leez—played out in another series of letter exchanges. Now sharing a room with his younger brother in the wake of his sister's birth, Alex delivers his first written plea to Mom, who, in the depths of postpartum exhaustion, refers him to his father. Thus do Alex and his good-natured dad begin their own guy-to-guy letter exchange, with Alex detailing Ethan's various transgressions ("He sticks crayons up his nose and barks like a walrus!") and his reasonable father reminding him that he was no different at the age of four. Back and forth go Alex's complaints and his father's practical rejoinders until Dad suggests that they build a tree house together, where surely Alex can find some peace and quiet. Indeed, it's too quiet—and Alex's final letter is to Ethan, inviting him to play in his new retreat. The last page shows the brothers happily ascending the tree-house ladder together. As spun out in the exchanges, the child vs. parent points of view and the sibling rivalry all ring hilariously true. Catrow's zany pencil and watercolor illustrations capture perfectly the madcap daydreams in Alex's head as well as the familiar detritus of a young boy's room. (The iguana still lives there!) A surefire kid-pleaser with a subtle, sweet lesson in peaceful coexistence.—Kathleen Finn, St. Francis Xavier School, Winooski, VT
Kirkus Reviews
Alex has his iguana (I Wanna Iguana, 2004), but now, thanks to Baby Annie, he has to share his room with his little brother Ethan. That's just not going to work out, so he begins a new letter-writing campaign. Mom's reply: Talk to your father. Alex's straightforward request nets this response: "...Mom says girls need privacy to do girl stuff." Alex can't think what girl stuff a baby would need to do, so he switches tactics, complaining that Ethan bothers his stuff. The heart-to-heart talk Dad suggests ends up with Alex cordoning off HIS part of the room (which unfortunately includes the door). Alex begs for an addition to the house, but Dad has a better idea. The two build Alex his own tree house...but it's boring in the tree house alone! Orloff's second epistolary tale is just as inventive and enjoyable as the first. Catrow's distinctive pencil-and-watercolor illustrations elevate the (mostly) realistic exchange in the letters to deliriously preposterous heights. The nearly wordless conclusion is as satisfying as it is unexpected. A sneaky lesson wrapped up in a flaky bundle of fun. (Picture book. 5-8)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780399254055
Publisher:
Penguin Young Readers Group
Publication date:
12/02/2010
Pages:
32
Sales rank:
52,264
Product dimensions:
10.80(w) x 8.60(h) x 0.40(d)
Lexile:
AD540L (what's this?)
Age Range:
5 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

Karen Kaufman Orloff lives in Hopewell Junction, New York.

David Catrow, illustrator of the Book Sense Best Book of the Year Finalist Stand Tall, Molly Lou Melon, lives in Springfield, Ohio.

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