Penny: The Forgotten Coin

Overview

Found by a young boy and placed into his pocket for safekeeping, Penny feels useless compared to the exciting Superball, the shiny Marble, the adventuresome Rock, and the colorful Bubblegum. But as she reminisces about her life and history, she realizes her worth, and it is reinforced by the young boy's need for her in an important decision. Denise Brennan-Nelson's boundless energy and enthusiasm comes from her days as a motivational speaker. Since the publication of her first book, Buzzy the Bumblebee in 1999, ...
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Overview

Found by a young boy and placed into his pocket for safekeeping, Penny feels useless compared to the exciting Superball, the shiny Marble, the adventuresome Rock, and the colorful Bubblegum. But as she reminisces about her life and history, she realizes her worth, and it is reinforced by the young boy's need for her in an important decision. Denise Brennan-Nelson's boundless energy and enthusiasm comes from her days as a motivational speaker. Since the publication of her first book, Buzzy the Bumblebee in 1999, Denise has taken that enthusiasm into schools and inspired thousands of children to "bee-lieve" in themselves. Her second title, My Momma Likes to Say, shares her interest in and knowledge of clichés, idioms, and funny expressions used by adults and often misunderstood by the children who hear them. Award-winning wildlife artist Michael Glenn Monroe is also known for his charming character illustrations in such titles as Buzzy the Bumblebee, A Wish to be a Christmas Tree (read aloud on the Today Show in 2002 by Katie Couric), and The Christmas Humbugs. He brings this lively brand of illustration to the adventures of Penny.

A penny begins to feel useless because her monetary value is small, but she remembers her history and feels proud when she is used to flip a coin.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
This clever story traces the history and folklore of the common copper penny. It begins when two young boys on a bike ride spot a bright penny. One feels it is not worth stopping for but the other stops and picks it up when an old saying comes to mind, "find a penny, pick it up; all day long, have good luck." He drops it in his pocket where it comes to life along side the other unwelcoming junk the boy has collected. The bubblegum, ball, rock, Superball, string and feather all challenge penny's usefulness and tell her to get lost. Penny begins to dream of greater days when pennies were quite useful in daily life—they actually inspired many sayings on thrift, were used for making wishes and were used by most baby boomers for their first purchase at the candy store. Historical facts surrounding the creation and use of the penny are in small print at the bottom of most pages as penny reminisces about her past glory days. Colorful illustrations featuring penny personified add to this stroll down memory lane. Penny is abruptly awakened from her daydream by the two boys arguing over who is going first. Penny wisely smiles at her critics as the boy takes her from his pocket to flip, of course, to determine who is going first. This look back at America's use of this lowly coin will bring smiles to parents and keep alive the lore surrounding the lowly penny for youngsters. 2003, Sleeping Bear Press, Ages 5 to 8.
—Meredith Kiger, Ph.D.
School Library Journal
K-Gr 4-A young boy finds a penny and puts it in his pocket, much to the irritation of the other "treasures" that reside there. Then, the perspective shifts to Penny's point of view. After being told that she is worthless by the other objects, the coin reminisces about "happier days," being tossed in a fountain, paying for candy or a pony ride, and being collected in a jar for the Red Cross. Beneath these rhyming verses, background information about the creation and use of pennies throughout United States history is presented in an extremely small font. Writing in the first person and using an enthusiastic tone ("I like pennies!"), the author asks readers to question their family members about the long-ago uses of this coin. The large, brightly colored paintings help to move the action along. Penny is depicted as a 1934 beauty with blue eyes and stick limbs. Similar in style to Loreen Leedy's Follow the Money! (Holiday, 2002), Brennan-Nelson's offering has a denser text and less appealing artwork. References in the story portion of the text will only be understood if the factual part is read or explained to children, and the tale itself is contrived. Stuck somewhere between a picture book and an informational account, this Penny is not worth saving.-Erlene Bishop Killeen, Fox Prairie Elementary School, Stoughton, WI Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781585361281
  • Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press
  • Publication date: 9/1/2003
  • Series: Sleeping Bear Picture Books
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 490,433
  • Age range: 5 - 10 Years
  • Product dimensions: 10.37 (w) x 10.32 (h) x 0.41 (d)

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