My Favorite Thing (According to Alberta)

Overview

Alberta likes what she likes.

Big dogs: no

Small dogs: yes

Grapefruits: no

Gummy candies: yes

Her favorite color is orange. And her favorite vegetable is potato chip.

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Overview

Alberta likes what she likes.

Big dogs: no

Small dogs: yes

Grapefruits: no

Gummy candies: yes

Her favorite color is orange. And her favorite vegetable is potato chip.

She likes baths. And boats.

But none of these is her favorite thing of all.

What could it be, then, her favorite thing?

In words and pictures, Alberta shares what she likes and does not like about dogs, cats, baths, and many other things as she leads up to what she likes best of all.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Alberta prefers cats to dogs. She adores the color orange "because anything that's orange looks terrifically exciting." Among foods, "Her favorite ice cream is peppermint. Her favorite vegetable is potato chip. But are any of these her favorite thing of all the things there are?" In this guessing game, Jenkins (Five Creatures) gives Alberta "particular tastes" as well as rationales for each preference. She creates mild suspense about the girl's absolute favorite item, revealed when Alberta does a headstand and happily shouts, "Me!" Cantone (The Wedding Dress Mess) pictures Alberta with auburn braids and a garnet dress that gives her a gumdrop silhouette. In the scribbly, loose pencil drawings, enhanced with earthy gouache hues and mixed-media collage, Alberta is a squat, bossy presence. She frolics with a two-tone cat, bulldog and bird; among other children, she reinforces her opinions by waving a teacher's pointer. Readers can debate whether animal shows trump cartoons, or whether plush owls are superior to baby dolls, as Alberta insists. Those who identify with the protagonist may enjoy the ride, but even readers who don't agree with Alberta will be drawn in by the imaginative, zippy art. Ages 4-8. (June) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2-Alberta has "particular tastes." She is not too fond of dogs, but cats are OK, especially her own pet, Neptune. Potato chips are her favorite vegetable, and her favorite color is orange because it is "terrifically exciting." Alberta does not like baby dolls, but stuffed owls are OK. Fish are OK so long as they are in the ocean. She likes to soak for long hours in the tub. So, of everything in Alberta's world, what is her absolute favorite thing? It's- herself, she says, while completing a handstand on a bright pink table. Close in theme to Nancy Carlson's I Like Me! (Viking, 1988) or Jamie Lee Curtis's I'm Gonna Like Me: Letting Off a Little Self-Esteem (HarperCollins, 2002), Jenkins's book is still an original. The illustrations are goofy and humorous, combining both watercolor and ink with objects such as beads or soap bars in a collage format. This book would make a lively selection for storytimes focusing on themes of self-esteem-or for sheer good fun.-Roxanne Burg, Orange County Public Library, CA Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Wielding pen, brush, and odd bits of cloth or cardboard with breezy abandon, Cantone depicts a pop-eyed, carrot-topped child in variously skewed domestic settings, tallying her "particular tastes"-"Dogs are not her favorite thing. 'I do not like large ones that drool, but small ones that keep their tongues in their mouths are okay.' " After going on to weigh in on cats, foods, colors, her big brother, baths, boats, and baby dolls, Alberta concludes with the unsurprising revelation that her very favorite thing is (wait for it): "ME!" Self-absorbed narrators can have some entertainment value, but Alberta's voice or-despite the wildly modernist art-visual presence isn't strong enough to stand out among all the Eloises and Olivias-nor are younger readers likely to make much of her abrupt insight that, "What you like and who you are, these are not the same. But they are not so very different either," without adult interpretation. (Picture book. 7-9)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780689849756
  • Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers
  • Publication date: 6/1/2004
  • Pages: 40
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.82 (w) x 10.94 (h) x 0.39 (d)

Meet the Author

Emily Jenkins is the author of Five Creatures (a Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor recipient, a Charlotte Zolotow Honor Book, and an American Library Association Children's Notable Book), Daffodil, and The Secret Life of Billie's Uncle Myron, as well as some stuff for grown-ups. Her favorite color is dusty blue, and her favorite candies are gummies (just like Alberta). She is definitely a cat person.

AnnaLaura Cantone is the illustrator of many silly children's books, including My Favorite Thing (According to Alberta) by Emily Jenkins, as well as the two Pecorino books. She lives her husband in Milan, Italy.

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