Little Zizi

Overview

Like all boys, Martin had a peepee, and this peepee didn’t cause him any problems. Of course, from time to time, Martin worried a little. He wondered if one day his peepee would look like his dad’s peepee. But that’s normal, all boys wonder about that. So, everything was going quite well.

That is, everything was going well until one day in the locker room the big bully Adrian started making fun of Martin’s peepee in front of everybody! Poor Martin. And to make matters worse, ...

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Overview

Like all boys, Martin had a peepee, and this peepee didn’t cause him any problems. Of course, from time to time, Martin worried a little. He wondered if one day his peepee would look like his dad’s peepee. But that’s normal, all boys wonder about that. So, everything was going quite well.

That is, everything was going well until one day in the locker room the big bully Adrian started making fun of Martin’s peepee in front of everybody! Poor Martin. And to make matters worse, Martin and the bully both wanted to be the boyfriend of Anäis, the prettiest girl in school. Push came to shove, and the boys decided to have a pissing contest. So how does our story end? Is it true that in the littlest of packages come the greatest gifts? Thierry Lenain’s jolly text is joined happily with Stéphane Poulin’s exquisite but hilarious illustrations to make this a wonderful book for parents and children to share and enjoy together.

Thierry Lenain taught handicapped children before becoming a writer. He has published more than fifty children’s books in Europe. In 1992, he became editor of Citrouille, a magazine about children’s literature. He has three children, and, after eighteen years at the foot of the mountains, he has moved to the edge of the sea.

Stéphane Poulin is a Canadian author and illustrator. He’s been drawing passionately since he was a kid. He has published over one hundred books in North America and Canada and has won many international prizes.

Daniel Zolinski is a photographer who is currently working on a collection of photographs that traces Odysseus’ journey home from the Trojan War.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"The frankness and humor with which author and illustrator address [the subject] will draw a&helllip;swelling audience.” —Kirkus Reviews

"Wry but always empathic, Lenain brings a novelistic depth to a story that could easily have been little more than an adult's cheap joke—especially given that the pivotal event is a peeing contest…Whether or not little boys care so much about the size and procreative powers of their zizis is debatable, but for sheer storytelling talent, there's no doubt: Lenain and Poulin are definitely well endowed." —Publisher's Weekly

"Little Zizi is a unique children’s picturebook that dares to address a part of growing up that virtually no other children’s literature will touch…Enthusiastically recommended, especially for mothers and fathers to share with their sons when teaching them the facts of life." —Midwest Book Review

"Little Zizi is a treasure of a book that teaches and encourages young boys to be comfortable with their bodies and genitalia…After all the bullying children, both boys and girls, inevitably face, Martin learns a valuable lesson in both self confidence and friendship." —Review of Texas Books

Publishers Weekly

Playground politics meets penis anxiety in this unlikely comedy. "Like all boys, Martin had a zizi, and this zizi didn't cause him any problems," writes the French author. But the school bully singles out Martin's zizi: "With such a little zizi, you can't make babies!" Later he adds insult to injury by asserting, "With your little zizi, you can't pee very far at all!" Can Martin vanquish the bully, reassert his manhood and win the beautiful, popular Anais? Poulin, a Canadian illustrator, chronicles Martin's torment and triumph with cinematic perspectives and a Brueghel-esque feel for character and place; his burnished paintings convey both the gritty reality of school life and the fretful ruminations of the endearingly geeky hero. Wry but always empathic, Lenain brings a novelistic depth to a story that could easily have been little more than an adult's cheap joke-especially given that the pivotal event is a peeing contest. Whether or not little boys care so much about the size and procreative powers of their zizis is debatable, but for sheer storytelling talent, there's no doubt: Lenain and Poulin are definitely well endowed. Ages 6-up. (May)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Children's Literature - Meredith Kiger
This strange little book tells the story of Martin, a young French boy, and his real and imagined obsessions with the size of his penis. Evidently, this is a universal preoccupation with boys, young and old. One day, while Martin is changing clothes in gym class, another boy, Adrian, starts making fun of the size of Martin's penis which he affectionately calls his zizi. Naturally, other students pick up on the humiliation and begin calling Martin Little Zizi at every opportunity and teasing him that he will never be able to make babies with such a little zizi. Martin, meanwhile, is sweet on a girl named Anais (A'-niece). Anais is playing hard to get by not choosing a boyfriend. The class decides to choose a boyfriend for her through a contest to see who can pee the farthest. Yes, you heard it right. Well, Martin begins to practice in his back yard for the big contest but chokes on the day of it. Adrian declares himself the winner but when he announces it to Anais, she has other ideas. The story ends positively, but parents are going to have to decide if one of life's little stresses is appropriate reading for their young child. Reviewer: Meredith Kiger, Ph.D.
School Library Journal

K-Gr 3- Martin is teased by bully Adrian because he has a small zizi (penis). In fact, all of the boys tease him after someone opens the changing room door at the swimming pool just as he is removing his wet swimming trunks. To add insult to the situation, Adrian tells Martin that he'll never be able to pee very far, and that the winner of a urinating contest will become the boyfriend of the girl Martin likes. Wacky illustrations in a brownish-gray hue accompany this quirky tale. In fact, one large unappealing picture of the bully with his scowling bulbous eyes is downright grotesque and frightening. In the end, the good guy gets the girl, "Because love/isn't a question of a zizi/-large or small." The entire story smacks of adult jokes and sensibilities. It is difficult to imagine the audience for this book.-Blair Christolon, Prince William Public Library System, Manassas, VA

Kirkus Reviews
Poking its way across the border more than ten years after its first exposure in Canada, this wry twist on the Penile Code provides direct reassurance to worried readers (of the male persuasion, at least) that Size Doesn't Matter. Catching sight of nerdy Martin standing naked in a swimming-pool dressing room, swaggering Adrian sneeringly dubs him "Little Zizi"; when Adrian goes on to announce that the lads will all decide who's to be pretty Anais's boyfriend with a peeing contest, Martin determines to fight back-but despite hard practice, come the contest he can't perform. No matter: Anais proceeds to hook up with Martin for a smooch. After a while, everything in Poulin's finely-modeled illustrations, from a string of sausages to a peaked cowboy hat, begins to look like a phallic symbol. Perspective renders the anatomy in question only barely visible; more obvious is the contrast between Adrian's piggy countenance and Martin's hunched shoulders and opaque eyeglasses. Not a comfortable topic, at least in this country, but the frankness and humor with which author and illustrator address it will draw a (wait for it) swelling audience. (Picture book. 6-9)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781933693057
  • Publisher: Cinco Puntos Press
  • Publication date: 4/1/2008
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 5 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.30 (w) x 10.40 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author


Thierry Lenain taught handicapped children before becoming writer. He has published more than fifty children's books in Europe. In 1992, he became editor of Citrouille (a magazine about children's literature). He has three children, and after 18 years at the foot of the mountains, he moved to the edge of the ocean, with which he is in love. Stéphane Poulin is a Canadian author and illustrator. He's been drawing passionately since he was a kid. These days he likes to work in oils. He has published over a hundred books in North America and Canada and has won many international prizes. Daniel Zolinksky is a photographer who is currently working on a collection of photographs that traces Odysseus' journey home from the Trojan War.
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