Is Tilly too silly? This goofy goose "took her baths in apple juice. She wore a pancake for a hat. She tried to ride the farmer's cat. She kissed a fish. Imagine that!” But Tilly's ridiculous behavior wears thin, prompting her barnyard friends to say, "That's enough!” So Tilly stops being sillyfor a while. The farm becomes Dullsville. Hetta Hen remarks, "I haven't laughed since Tilly chased the garbage men.” Harvey Goat adds, "Not since Tilly sneezed and blew the fleas from Farmer's coat and set his underwear afloat.”
Finally, Horse rallies the animals to apologize, and Tilly resumes her antics. The outsize, cartoonish illustrations of acrylic, pencil, and pen on linen overflow the pages and embellish the humor with details like the tiny tractors on Farmer's boxers. If kids don't already know the phrase "you silly goose,” they will after laughing at this performance.
Children's Literature - Mary Hynes-Berry
Spinelli turns the old expression "you silly goose" into a rollicking rhyming tale that celebrates the importance of those rare creatures who have a talent for nonsense. Tilly certainly qualifies as "She wore a pancake for a hat./She tried to ride the farmer's cat./She kissed a fish. Imagine that!" The other farmyard animals insist that Tilly stop being silly and she retires to the barn. But soon everyone realizes it has been too long since they had a good laugh and urge Tilly to return to her old ways. Tilly now "glues blue glitter on the plow/ and turns six cartwheels on the cow. And all the farm is happy now!" Slonim's lively full-color illustrations are a perfect match for the text. This book is great fun for the tongue. It invites revisiting for no good reason but delight or it could launch a great exploration of colloquial expressions. Reviewer: Mary Hynes-Berry
School Library Journal
Tilly, a goose, bathes in apple juice, wears a pancake as a hat, and likes to tickle frogs. But her ways raise the ire of the other farm animals, who demand that she cease all silliness: "No more naps in Scarecrow pants!," etc. Once she stops, however, they realize that the farm is not as much fun as it used to be. They apologize to Tilly and begin to view her antics with appreciation, sometimes even joining in. The acrylic, pencil, and ballpoint pen illustrations complement the rhyming text and do a nice job of conveying the animals' varying levels of frustration. Some pictures are laugh-out-loud funny, and readers will take delight in viewing Tilly's wacky behavior, such as when she tries to ride the farmer's cat or soaks her feet in mayonnaise. This story will appeal to children who follow the beat of their own drummers, and would work well as a read-aloud.-Beth Cuddy, Seward Elementary School, Auburn, NY
Silly Tilly is the farm comedian, entertaining all the animals with her goosey, goofy behavior. "She wore a pancake as a hat. / She tried to ride the farmer's cat. / She kissed a fish. Imagine that!" But sometime after she sits on and squashes Rooster's birthday cake, the other farmyard animals get fed up and tell Tilly Goose to end all her silliness: "No more naps in Scarecrow's pants! / No packing piglet off to France. / No yodels at the Harvest Dance!" Weeks later, a very quiet and sedate farm has stopped laughing. "It's dullsville on the farm. No fun!" Apologies are expressed "with quacks and oinks and heartfelt sighs," and soon Silly Tilly's back to her foolishness and the much-missed jovial atmosphere is restored. Slonim's expressive cartoon-style paintings rendered in acrylic, pencil and ballpoint pen on linen actively complement Spinelli's humorous triads, reveling in the ridiculous absurdity. A surefire hit for storytime and shared reading sessions. (Picture book. 3-6)