Jellybeans

Overview

Dutch author/artist Sylvia van Ommen presents a delightfully—and deceptively—simple tale introducing a pair of friends whose favorite treat inspires some unexpectedly deep questions. George, a young rabbit, gets a message from his pal Oscar, a cat. "How about going to the park and eating jellybeans?" The two friends meet up and have a hilarious and surprisingly perceptive discussion about the existence of heaven, and what might or might not go on there, while nibbling on their favorite food. Funny, winsome, with ...
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Overview

Dutch author/artist Sylvia van Ommen presents a delightfully—and deceptively—simple tale introducing a pair of friends whose favorite treat inspires some unexpectedly deep questions. George, a young rabbit, gets a message from his pal Oscar, a cat. "How about going to the park and eating jellybeans?" The two friends meet up and have a hilarious and surprisingly perceptive discussion about the existence of heaven, and what might or might not go on there, while nibbling on their favorite food. Funny, winsome, with a touch of Frog and Toad and a huge dollop of charm, this little book is an enchanting, provocative read.

Two friends, a rabbit and a cat, speculate about what heaven will be like as they enjoy a visit to the park.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Stylistically economical but expressive in language and art, this [book] never loses its naive point of view. Cat and rabbit are endearingly rendered with seemingly effortless and unerring black line surrounded by generous white space. The achievement cannot be overestimated—feather light treatment of the weightless subject and all of it made charmingly comprehensible."
Kirkus Reviews

" The author's spare artwork is as streamlined, childlike, and winsome as her narrative, which is likely to inspire dialogue—and surely offer reassurance&mdashlabout what might lie ahead."
Publishers Weekly

" This unsentimental story may comfort children who see their own questions and concerns mirrored in the ruminations of the two protagonists."
School Library Journal

Publishers Weekly
Dutch author/artist Van Ommen presents a delightfully-and deceptively-simple tale introducing a pair of friends whose favorite treat inspires some existential questions. In charming ink drawings, Oscar the cat and George the rabbit make a plan (via text messages on their cell phones) to get together. "Hi. Have you seen how nice it is outside? How about going to the park to eat jellybeans?" suggests Oscar, who instructs George to bring the candy; the feline arrives with a thermos of hot chocolate. As the two settle down with their snack, Oscar finds a jellybean "as blue as the sky," which prompts the question, "Do you think there's a heaven?" George endearingly responds, "I'm going if you're going, that's for sure," yet worries that heaven might be so big that they won't bump into each other or that they won't know each other if they do meet. With echoes of Holly Keller's Farfallina and Marcel, the buddies' solution to this potential dilemma will please youngsters as thoroughly as it does the pensive pals, who agree, "If we bump into each other and we don't recognize each other... Then we can just become friends all over again." (One will bring the jellybeans-the other hot chocolate.) The author's spare artwork, is as streamlined, childlike and winsome as her narrative, which is likely to inspire dialogue-and surely offers reassurance-about what might lie ahead. Ages 4-up. (May) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal
Gr 1-3-Sitting in the park on a lovely day, George, a rabbit, and Oscar, a cat, enjoy hot chocolate and jelly beans. A blue one reminds them of the sky, which prompts a discussion of heaven. In a low-key, conversational tone very much like the musings of young children, the friends wonder, "Do you think there's a heaven up there?...Will we go there, too-both of us?" They decide that even if they don't recognize one another, they could "become friends all over again. Eat jellybeans together, stuff like that." Naive, black-line drawings on a cream-colored background, many small and framed, depict the two friends. One especially poignant illustration shows a tiny rabbit alone on the page with the words, "-what if it's really big and you never bump into anybody?" This unsentimental story may comfort children who see their own questions and concerns mirrored in the ruminations of the two protagonists. A one-on-one reading might spark further discussion.-Marianne Saccardi, Norwalk Community College, CT Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
A small, framed line drawing of a rabbit receiving a text message hints at the gentle understatement within this small gem. Rabbit and his dearest friend cat meet in the park, share jellybeans and cocoa and ponder heaven . . . whether it will be crowded, whether there will be jellybeans and most important whether they will meet and remember each other in the hereafter. In the event they fail to know each other, they will simply become friends again. Their contemplations move outward from the personal and concrete to the abstract and metaphysical, then back again to the personal and concrete, while retaining a quality of uncomplicated innocence, comforting reassurance and tender whimsy. Stylistically economical but expressive in language and art, this never loses its naive point of view. Cat and rabbit are endearingly rendered with seemingly effortless and unerring black line surrounded by generous white space. The achievement cannot be overestimated-feather light treatment of the weightiest subject and all of it made charmingly comprehensible. (Picture book. 4-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781556436321
  • Publisher: North Atlantic Books
  • Publication date: 10/28/2006
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 50
  • Sales rank: 699,663
  • Age range: 6 - 9 Years
  • Product dimensions: 7.25 (w) x 6.61 (h) x 0.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Sylva Van Ommen attended the Academy of Art in Kampen, The Netherlands, and currently makes her home in Zwolle. Jellybeans is the first book she has written and illustrated for children.
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