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Sourpuss and Sweetie Pie

Sourpuss and Sweetie Pie

by Norton Juster, Chris Sorensen (Narrated by), Michele Medlin (Narrated by)

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The sequel to THE HELLO, GOODBYE WINDOW, winner of the 2006 Caldecott Medal


The sequel to THE HELLO, GOODBYE WINDOW, winner of the 2006 Caldecott Medal

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

This welcome sequel to the Caldecott Medal title The Hello, Goodbye Window knowingly describes a child's conflicting personalities. "Sometimes I'm Sourpuss," a multiracial girl admits. "And sometimes I'm Sweetie Pie." Her grandparents, Poppy and Nanna, accept her dueling dispositions, but when she visits they like to know whom to expect. "Poppy, it's me, Sweetie Pie," she promises, keeping her alter ego at bay. She does acknowledge her mercurial moods ("Sometimes you can go from Sourpuss to Sweetie Pie so quick," she admits, in a six-stage Hyde to Jekyll transformation), and her grandparents gently tease her ("Pleasant dreams, girls," they joke at bedtime). Both the sunny moments and the tantrums will ring true for readers of any age. Raschka (see Peter and the Wolf, below) devises competing motifs of light daubs and glowering smears, pairing Sweetie Pie's upbeat sky blue, gold, cantaloupe and pink with Sourpuss's grumpy scarlet, mucky green and purple-blue. Sweetie Pie's balletic, floaty postures contrast with Sourpuss's dramatic scowls and defiant stances; the two personas appear virtually side by side for maximum effect. A keeper. All ages. (Oct.)

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School Library Journal

PreS-Gr 2

The endearing preschooler from The Hello, Goodbye Window (Hyperion, 2005) is back in all of her precociousness as her grandparents try to navigate the world of her moods. Their granddaughter seems to actually be two little girls in one. Sourpuss is bratty and contrary while Sweetie Pie is cooperative, sweet, and cuddly. But her grandparents never know which one they'll be seeing next. She can go down for a nap as Sweetie Pie and wake up as her alter ego. Raschka's abstract, vibrant artwork sets up the differences between these two personalities. Sourpuss is all angles and rigid lines, and the use of a far-off perspective distances readers from this contentious child. Conversely, Sweetie Pie is all curves and softness and immensely huggable. What is particularly satisfying is that despite knowing she can be good or bad, the protagonist is sure in her knowledge that her grandparents love her. Her story will resonate with young children who see themselves in the character. The last page is priceless: Nanna and Poppy sitting across from each other in comfy chairs, holding hands, exhausted. Somehow it is clear that they will be there for whoever wakes up in the morning.-Joan Kindig, James Madison University, Harrisonburg, VA

Kirkus Reviews
The ingenuous little girl from the Caldecott Medal-winning The Hello, Goodbye Window (2005) is back, exploring the split personality that causes her loving grandparents to give her two very different names. She explains, "Poppy doesn't like Sourpuss too much. Neither does Nanna. I mean they like her because she's me, but not so much. Do you know what I mean?" Anyone who's ever spent time with a young child will know exactly what she means, as will children themselves. Once again, Juster nails the inner life of a child, capturing perfectly the mercurial mood swings that can turn adorable into awful in the blink of an eye-and capturing also the child's own bewilderment at the process. Raschka's childlike, gorgeously smeary, textured images employ ever-so-subtle shifts in color and line-and not-so-subtle scowls-to chart the curly-haired moppet's transitions from Sourpuss to Sweetie Pie and back, one fabulous double-page spread that fairly bristles with crankiness acting as a set of body-language studies in truculence. Readers will be as happy as Nanna and Poppy to welcome both of them back. (Picture book. 3-7)

Product Details

Recorded Books, LLC
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Meet the Author

NORTON JUSTER is the author of the children’s classic THE PHANTOM TOLLBOOTH. His first picture book, THE HELLO, GOODBYE WINDOW, illustrated by Chris Raschka, won the 2006 Caldecott Medal and was followed by a sequel, SOURPUSS AND SWEETIE PIE.

Chris Raschka is the Caldecott Award-winning illustrator of A BALL FOR DAISY and THE HELLO, GOODBYE WINDOW. He is also the illustrator of YO! YES? (which won a Caldecott Honor), SOURPUSS AND SWEETIE PIE, CHARLIE PARKER PLAYED BE BOP, and FARMY FARM. He lives with his wife and son in New York City.

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