Harry and Emily want to do something special for their Mom on Mother's Day. They ask her what she gave grandma when she was little. She tells them that she made pictures, grew flowers, cleaned the house and brought her breakfast in bed, but that her mother always said that she didn't need presents because her daughter was her favorite Mother's Day present. Harry and Emily laught t this and get busy. They make plans and some of them even work out. Harry succeeds in growing some flowers; they made a card and prepare some very special pancakes on Mother's Day morning. The latter was quite an undertaking and the pancakes have some unusual ingredients. When it is all ready, they take everything up to mother on a tray. Then disaster strikes, but bravo for Mom who tells they that they are indeed her real presents and kudos to Dad who truly saves the day by taking everyone out for a pancake breakfast, Mom responds by saying "That is my second favorite present." A Level Two reader, grades 1-2. Part of the "Holiday House Readers" series. 2003, Holiday House,
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
K-Gr 2-Kittens Harry and Emily want to give their mother a special present for Mother's Day, so they ask her what she gave her mother when she was a child. Mother tells them that Grandma always replied that she didn't need gifts; that her daughter was the best one of all. The kittens think that they can come up with something better than "that silly no-presents stuff." After some helpful hints from dad, they organize a gift tray of mom's favorite flowers (marigolds), special pancakes (the ingredients include peanut butter and marshmallows), and a handmade card. Not surprisingly, nothing goes as planned, but mom is delighted nonetheless. Whimsical details enliven the story. Beginning readers will recognize themselves in thoughtful Harry and rambunctious Emily. Ruelle's naive ink with colorful wash artwork is charming and perfectly suited to the text.-Marilyn Taniguchi, Beverly Hills Public Library, CA Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Feline siblings Harry and Emily help their mother celebrate her special day in this sixth entry in the Harry and Emily Adventure series by Ruelle (Easy as Apple Pie, 2002, etc.). The mid-level easy reader text is divided into four chapters, with Ruelle's naive drawings in a variety of formats adding their own understated charm. The kittens talk over Mother's Day with both their mom and their dad, discuss what presents they could create, and decide on home-grown flowers and a home-cooked breakfast in bed as their gifts. They plant flower seeds for their mom, and when the big day arrives, they make lumpy marshmallow-and-peanut-butter pancakes to serve alongside their budding marigolds and a homemade card. Little sister Emily leaps on the bed, spilling everything, but her mom reassures her that, just as her own mother always said, a mother's best Mother's Day gifts are her own children. This sentimental though heart-felt conclusion is likely to appeal more to adults than children, but the earnest endeavors of the charming kittens are still engaging. The story also subtly reinforces some curriculum objectives through the details of several processes: planning for a family holiday, growing seeds, time sequences, gathering ingredients for a recipe, and cooking. Harry and Emily have quite a few more holidays to explore, and this publisher in particular seems likely to extend the franchise. (Easy reader. 5-8)