My New Shirt

( 1 )

Overview

Receiving the yearly birthday gift from his grandmother has become David’s living nightmare. The “surprise” she always has for him never varies. How can he stop this never-ending flow of stiff, white, scratchy shirts — “perfect gentlemen” shirts that make him squirm and pull and shift and twitch? David closes his eyes and imagines a long line of shirts — one for every year of his life — stretching on forever. Then suddenly, without really intending to, he has done the unthinkable.

“DAVID!” his mother screams. And...

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Overview

Receiving the yearly birthday gift from his grandmother has become David’s living nightmare. The “surprise” she always has for him never varies. How can he stop this never-ending flow of stiff, white, scratchy shirts — “perfect gentlemen” shirts that make him squirm and pull and shift and twitch? David closes his eyes and imagines a long line of shirts — one for every year of his life — stretching on forever. Then suddenly, without really intending to, he has done the unthinkable.

“DAVID!” his mother screams. And when David opens his eyes, there are his mother, his father, and his bubbie staring at him. The shirt is no longer in his hands. He has thrown it out the window! Now it is out on the street, in the jaws of his dog, and the very merry chase is on.

Bitingly funny and keenly observed, My New Shirt is graphically presented as a photo album commemorating David’s desperate act of liberation from a family tradition badly in need of a change.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Praise for Cary Fagan:

“Fagan’s prose is engaging….”
School Library Journal

“Fagan proves himself a wonderful writer with a rare comic gift.”
Publishers Weekly

“Cary Fagan gives readers a wonderfully whimsical and yes, heartwarming, story…”
Times-Colonist

School Library Journal

Gr 1-2 Every year on his birthday, David receives the same present from his Bubbie-a starched white dress shirt. He can imagine himself hanging white shirts up in an endless row for the rest of his life. This year, in frustration, he flings the shirt out the window, and his dog, Pupik, chases after it. He drags the shirt through a muddy garden, past a restaurant diner eating borscht, and into a basket of bagels. And incredible as it may seem, the shirt flies out the window not once, but twice, in this far-fetched tale. Comic watercolor illustrations are framed to resemble photographs taped onto the beige pages of an album, adding to the nostalgic feel of the story. Birthday books are plentiful this year, and this one will appeal to a limited audience.-Blair Christolon, Prince William Public Library System, Manassas, VA

Kirkus Reviews
David loves to visit his Bubbie, except on his birthday. The reason for this strange attitude toward a wonderful Grandma? Every year she gives him the same present, a scratchy, stiff, white dress shirt. At the moment of gifting this year, a horrific vision of years of shirts attacking him in a dark closet distracts David, and the new shirt gets away from him, wafting right out the window. Pupik, David's dog, wrestles with it through the town and brings it back ruined with stains. However, Bubbie is a miracle worker with the cleansers; soon it's good as new. When it somehow escapes through the window again, David's Bubbie gets the message. Petricic's watercolors made to look like photographs taped in a scrapbook are the main draw, particularly for Pupik's mad shirt run. This Canadian import with a Yiddish accent might appeal more to the Bubbies than their bubbellah, but it will have appeal especially when shared. (Picture book. 5-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780887767159
  • Publisher: Tundra
  • Publication date: 9/11/2007
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 4 - 6 Years
  • Product dimensions: 10.38 (w) x 8.28 (h) x 0.41 (d)

Meet the Author

Cary Fagan is an award-winning writer for both young readers and adults. In addition to several picture books published with Tundra, he also wrote the award-winning biography of Chan Hon Goh, Beyond the Dance: A Ballerina’s Life. He has won a Mr. Christie’s Silver Medal for Daughter of the Great Zandini, a City of Toronto Book Award for his first adult novel, and the Jewish Book Committee Prize for Fiction. Cary Fagan lives in Toronto.

Dusan Petricic is the award-winning illustrator of more than twenty books for children including Rude Ramsay and the Roaring Radishes published by Bloomsbury in September 2004. A former professor of illustration and book design, Petricic’s work appears in The New York Times, Scientific American, The Wall Street Journal, and The Toronto Star. He lives in Toronto.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted February 2, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    SMILE PROVOKING FAMILY STORY

    Young David, like many other little boys, loves to go and visit his grandmother, his bubbie. While her apartment is small it always smells of cinnamon, is above an excellent bagel shop, and is spotless. As his mother says, 'Bubbie makes cleaning an art,' and his father says, '...germs are even afraid to try and come in.' Now, the one day that David does not like to visit Bubbie is his birthday because on every birthday since the day he was born Bubbie has given him a white shirt. It is a stiff white shirt that his parents say makes him look like a gentleman, but it's the sort of shirt that makes him 'squirm and pull and shift and twist.' On this birthday David tries very hard to be polite and obeys when he is asked to try it on. However, his good intentions go awry when he closes his eyes and suddenly the shirt is out the window. What follows is a smile provoking chase throughout the neighborhood as his little dog Pupik runs with the shirt firmly between his teeth. Youngsters will enjoy the family's antics as they try to catch Pupik and retrieve the shirt. They'll also be pleased with Bubbie's final declaration. - Gail Cooke

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