Sheila Rae, the Brave

( 7 )

Overview

"I am very brave," Sheila Rae said, patting herself on the back. She wasn't afraid of anything - not thunder, not lightning, not the big black dog at the end of the block. And when she wanted to walk home a new way and Louise wouldn't, she called her sister a scaredy-cat and set out alone.

But all the bravado in the world failed to help when Sheila Rae found herself lost. Luckily, her sister was not far behind ...

A warm and loving story of ...

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Overview

"I am very brave," Sheila Rae said, patting herself on the back. She wasn't afraid of anything - not thunder, not lightning, not the big black dog at the end of the block. And when she wanted to walk home a new way and Louise wouldn't, she called her sister a scaredy-cat and set out alone.

But all the bravado in the world failed to help when Sheila Rae found herself lost. Luckily, her sister was not far behind ...

A warm and loving story of sibling sympathy and support.

When brave Sheila Rae, who usually looks out for her sister Louise, becomes lost and scared one day, Louise comes to the rescue.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
The mouse heroine of Henkes's pitch-perfect comedy doesn't frighten easily-she even growls at stray dogs. But when she gets lost, it's her "scaredy cat" sister who helps her find the way home. Ages 4-up. (Apr.)
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2 Fearless mouse Sheila Rae is not afraid of anything, and she flaunts her confidence by confronting real and imagined terrors daily (her imagined ones are particularly creative and funny). Finally Sheila Rae decides on a new challenge: she will go home from school a new way. When she gets hopelessly lost, her courage falters, but scaredy-cat little sister Louise has been surreptitiously following Sheila Rae, and proves her own bravery by leading her sister safely home. Louise mimics her sister's undaunted style all the way home (``She growled at stray dogs, and bared her teeth at stray cats''), thus providing a strong language pattern for new readers. Bouncy watercolors in spring-like colors with some pen-and-ink detailing highlight Sheila Rae's bravado in an engaging and amusing way, and Henkes provides Sheila Rae, Louise, and their school friends with highly expressive faces. Children will respond to both the humor of the story and the illustrations and to the challenge of facing fears head-on. Librarians can share this one with small groups or recommend it for patrons without fear, for children will love it. David Gale, ``School Library Journal''
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 3-Laura Hamilton does a wonderful job in this reading of Kevin Henkes' popular book (Greenwillow, 1987). Sheila Rae's self-proclaimed bravery is nowhere to be found when she finds herself lost on the way home from school one day. In an act of sibling-love, her little "scaredy-cat" sister helps out and saves the day. Appropriate sound effects are liberally infused in the recording, along with an occasional musical interlude, heightening the feelings of fear, helplessness, and finally triumph that listeners will feel right along with Sheila Rae. Henkes' gift for writing and illustrating is nicely complemented by this recording. Wonderful for read-alongs (especially for little sisters!), this title will be useful for emergent readers as well as general listening.-Kirsten Martindale, Buford Academy, GA Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780688071554
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 8/28/1987
  • Edition description: 1st ed
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 491,424
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.00 (w) x 9.87 (h) x 0.32 (d)

Meet the Author

Kevin Henkes

Kevin Henkes is the author and illustrator of close to fifty critically acclaimed and award-winning picture books, beginning readers, and novels. He received the Caldecott Medal for Kitten's First Full Moon in 2005. Kevin Henkes is also the creator of a number of picture books featuring his mouse characters, including the #1 New York Times bestsellers Lilly's Big Day and Wemberly Worried, the Caldecott Honor Book Owen, and the beloved Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse. His most recent mouse character, Penny, was introduced in Penny and Her Song (2012); her story continued in Penny and Her Doll and Penny and Her Marble (a Geisel Honor Book). Bruce Handy, in a New York Times Book Review piece about A Good Day, wrote, "It should be said: Kevin Henkes is a genius." Kevin Henkes received two Newbery Honors for novels—one for his newest novel for young readers, The Year of Billy Miller, and the other for Olive's Ocean. Also among his fiction for older readers are the novels Junonia, Bird Lake Moon, The Birthday Room, and Sun & Spoon. He lives with his family in Madison, Wisconsin.

Kevin Henkes is the author and illustrator of close to fifty critically acclaimed and award-winning picture books, beginning readers, and novels. He received the Caldecott Medal for Kitten's First Full Moon in 2005. Kevin Henkes is also the creator of a number of picture books featuring his mouse characters, including the #1 New York Times bestsellers Lilly's Big Day and Wemberly Worried, the Caldecott Honor Book Owen, and the beloved Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse. His most recent mouse character, Penny, was introduced in Penny and Her Song (2012); her story continued in Penny and Her Doll and Penny and Her Marble (a Geisel Honor Book). Bruce Handy, in a New York Times Book Review piece about A Good Day, wrote, "It should be said: Kevin Henkes is a genius." Kevin Henkes received two Newbery Honors for novels—one for his newest novel for young readers, The Year of Billy Miller, and the other for Olive's Ocean. Also among his fiction for older readers are the novels Junonia, Bird Lake Moon, The Birthday Room, and Sun & Spoon. He lives with his family in Madison, Wisconsin.

Biography

Kevin Henkes still owns some of his favorite books from childhood. "They're brimming with all the telltale signs of true love: dog-eared pages, fingerprints on my favorite illustrations, my name and address inscribed on both front and back covers in inch-high lettering, and the faint smell of stale peanut butter on the bindings," he says in an interview on his web site.

Back in his peanut-butter sandwich days, Henkes dreamed of becoming an artist. By high school, he had combined his love of drawing with a newfound interest in writing, and at age 19, he took his portfolio to New York City in hopes of finding a publisher. Young Henkes returned home from his weeklong trip with a contract from Greenwillow Books, and he's worked as a children's writer and illustrator ever since.

Henkes's style has evolved over the years to include more humor, more whimsy and a lot more mice. Though he began illustrating his picture books with realistic drawings of children, he's since developed a recurring cast of mouse characters rendered in a more cartoon-like style -- though with a range of expressions that make the spirited Lilly, anxious Wemberly, fearless Sheila Rae and sensitive Chrysanthemum into highly believable heroines. Owen, the story of a little mouse who isn't ready to give up his tattered security blanket, won a Caldecott Honor Medal for its winsome watercolor-and-ink illustrations.

Many of Henkes's mouse books deal with such common childhood ordeals as starting school, being teased and getting lost. Chrysanthemum, about a mouse whose new schoolmates tease her about her name, was inspired by Henkes's own feelings when he started school. "The book is about family, and how starting something new and going out into the world can be very hard," he told an interviewer for The Five Owls. "I remember going to kindergarten -- my grandfather had a beautiful rose garden, and he gave me the last roses of the season to bring to the kindergarten teacher the next day. I don't even remember how it happened, but an older kid took these flowers from me on the playground, and I remember coming home, feeling awful." As a grown-up, Henkes is able to translate difficult childhood transitions into stories that are both honest and reassuring. In a review of Chrysanthemum, Kirkus Reviews noted: "Henkes's language and humor are impeccably fresh, his cozy illustrations sensitive and funny, his little asides to adults an unobtrusive delight."

Henkes has also written novels for older children, in which he "explores family relationships with breathtaking tenderness" (Publisher's Weekly). In The Birthday Room, for example, a twelve-year-old boy learns the reason for his mother's long estrangement from her brother, and helps effect a reconciliation. "Refreshingly, Henkes has given us a male protagonist who is reflective, creative and emotionally sensitive," wrote Karen Leggett in The New York Times Book Review. "Ben feels the anguish of his mother's long-simmering bitterness and his uncle's agonizing guilt. Yet at a time when it is almost a fad to blame dysfunctional families for problems, we learn that even though there are never simple answers and not many fairy-tale endings, families can heal."

Though his novels are more complex and serious than his picture books, all Henkes's works suggest an author with deep empathy for the intense emotions of childhood. As a Publisher's Weekly reviewer wrote, "Behind each book is a wide-open heart, one readers can't help but respond to, that makes all of Henkes's books of special value to children."

Good To Know

Henkes's wife, Laura Dronzek, is also an artist. She painted the cover illustration for Henkes' novel Sun and Spoon and illustrated his picture book Oh!.

Henkes has turned down requests to use his mouse characters in a television series, but some of his books are available in video form in Chrysanthemum and More Kevin Henkes Stories. The video's narrators include Meryl Streep, Sarah Jessica Parker and Mary Beth Hurt.

Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse has been adapted into a stage play.

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    1. Hometown:
      Madison, Wisconsin
    1. Date of Birth:
      November 27, 1960
    2. Place of Birth:
      Racine, Wisconsin
    1. Education:
      University of Wisconsin, Madison
    2. Website:

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 7 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Posted September 20, 2013

    I Also Recommend:

    Kevin Henkes can do no wrong!

    My 4 and 6 year old daughters love this book. They enjoy reading it and then acting it out together, my 4 year old loves that the little sister gets to be the one to save the day. Wonderful story for any child.

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  • Posted November 11, 2011

    Excellent!!

    Bought this book for my almost 4 year-old daughter and it is wonderful! Great pictures and a great story!!

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  • Posted May 15, 2010

    Great for sisters!

    I purchased this book for my daughters and they loved it! The premise of the brave older sister getting in over her head and the younger daughter coming to the rescue is something both my 7 year and 3 year old responded to. Each of my daughters identified with the character they most resembled. The artwork is vivid and they have enjoyed several books in this series by the same author. The books are very individual to themselves and so each one stands entirely on its own. I would recommend this book to anyone with a pair of girls that are adventure loving and confident in their abilities. My older daughter laughs out loud at the "braveness" of Sheila and her resulting antics. Great read!

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  • Posted January 16, 2010

    Great book to read aloud to your kids!

    I would totally recommend all of Kevin Henkes books. We have them all and they make for great reading together time. The characters are charming and the story lines fun and entertaining.

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  • Posted October 26, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Nice story

    We love Kevin Henkes books. The series are just perfect for kindergarten children. My son just loved it. I reccomend for 5-6 years old children

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 13, 2003

    Great book.

    A beautiful story for children, especially girls, age 3-6. Younger children will love to have it read to them, and those who can read will enjoy it in a different way.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 3, 2000

    A brave little mouse

    When Sheila Rae walks home a different way, she decides she's not the bravest. I played Louise's, Sheila's little sister,voice in the CDrom. It was very fun and I really got to know the story well. Now that I am older I am into other books but I always read it when I need a short good book. I recommend this to children under the age of 10. It is a very sweet book and the CDrom is a fun way to see the book come alive.

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