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The Fantastic 5 & 10 Cent Store: A Rebus Adventure

Overview

What lurks inside that mysterious store at the end of town? Only Benny Penny is adventurous enough to find out. . . .

In this book, you can read the words and the pictures. Perfect for children just learning to read, this silly, kid-friendly rebus picture book is sure to be a hit in the classroom and at home. (In a rebus, words are represented by images, or by an image plus a letter. And even beginning readers can take pleasure in reading pictures!) The pairing of Valorie ...

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Overview

What lurks inside that mysterious store at the end of town? Only Benny Penny is adventurous enough to find out. . . .

In this book, you can read the words and the pictures. Perfect for children just learning to read, this silly, kid-friendly rebus picture book is sure to be a hit in the classroom and at home. (In a rebus, words are represented by images, or by an image plus a letter. And even beginning readers can take pleasure in reading pictures!) The pairing of Valorie Fisher’s full-page art with J. Patrick Lewis’s funny rhyming poem will give young readers plenty of clues for solving these fun and engaging picture puzzles.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Lewis (First Dog) and Fisher (When Ruby Tried to Grow Candy) use rebuses to introduce readers to a nearly extinct piece of Americana--the five-and-10-cent store--and the wonders held inside. Shopkeepers on Pumpkin Street are mystified when a new building appears; only bespectacled young Benny Penny (rendered as Ben plus a picture of a knee and a shiny copper coin) knows what kind of store it is. Laced with rebus images of numbers, letters, and assorted objects, Lewis’s sturdy verse describes the shenanigans taking place: “A toaster with flamingo wings/ Flew over, popping bread,/ A paintbrush dipped itself in green,/ Painting the ceiling red.” Fisher’s mixed-media panels combine photographic images of five-and-dime merchandise like steel wool and Vulcanol with the friendly figures of the proprietors, Mr. Nickel and Miss Dime. The rebuses appear opposite each image on yellowing lined paper, straight from a vintage school notebook, and for those having trouble guessing, the full text of the rhymes appears at the end of the book. Good, old-fashioned fun, with a surprise ending that reveals Benny’s talent for public relations. Ages 4–9. (Sept.)
Children's Literature - Beverley Fahey
A wild adventure waits inside the doors of the Five and Dime. When Benny Penny steps inside he is greeted by Mr. Nickel and Miss Dime who explain they have not had customers in a very long time. Benny is amazed to see a toaster with flamingo wings flying overhead and two nails waiting to hit a hammer on the head. A calendar jumps off the wall (it is leap year) and the ketchup and mustard bottles have flipped their lids. A race between Teapot and Pot has a cheering section made up of a flag and a balloon. When Mr. Nickel and Miss Dime decry their lack of customers, Benny Penny has an idea to hang twinkling lights outside the door to welcome customers. Now customers flock to The Penny Nickel Dime. The rhyming rebus text combines pictures and words, and it may be difficult for youngsters to read on the first go round. However, with the help of the poem appended to the story, they should have a more fluent read the second time through. The computer-generated illustrations are filled with whimsy and nostalgia that will cause readers to pause and go over every detail. The faded yellow endpapers are reproductions from a catalog from years gone by with great bargains like a kitchen clock for and a modern electric toaster for 94 cents (regular price ). The nonsense of the poem and illustrations should elicit giggles, and it may encourage children to try creating a rebus of their own. Reviewer: Beverley Fahey
Kirkus Reviews

When sun, rain and snowflakes collide, a strange store suddenly rises up at the end of Pumpkin Street. Benny Penny is the only one brave enough to walk through the door. Inside, he finds a fantastical adventure. Written in verse comparable only to Lewis Carroll, toasters fly, ketchup dances and the cup gets a little saucy with the saucer. The winsome pinnacle of bizarre is the Pot and Teapot race. Other objects--and readers, too--cheer them on. But what makes this tomfoolery even more appealing is that it is also in rebus form. The rebus verses set off one side of the spread, and Fisher's layered, diorama-style scenes envelop the other. Old clippings from five-and-dimes serve as wallpaper, and every label, on every item, is painstakingly detailed. While not ideal for just-emergent readers, those a little more advanced will likely embrace the game. A rebus poem by its very nature begs to be reread, but with ebullient wordplay and a nostalgic tug at the (admittedly adult) heart, this one will be especially hard to let go. (complete poem at end) (Picture book. 4-9)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780375858789
  • Publisher: Random House Children's Books
  • Publication date: 9/14/2010
  • Pages: 40
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.10 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

J. Patrick Lewis is one of the best-known children’s poets writing today and the author of many celebrated picture books. His books include Doodle Dandies, Please Bury Me in the Library (one of the New York Public Library’s 100 Books for Reading and Sharing), First Dog, coauthored with Beth Zappitello, about a Portuguese water dog who finds a home in the White House, and Kindergarten Cat. He lives in Westerville, Ohio. Learn more at www.jpatricklewis.com.

Valorie Fisher is the author/illustrator of How High Can a Dinosaur Count?, a School Library Journal Best Book of the Year, and When Ruby Tried to Grow Candy. She has contributed the photographs for the beloved Moxy Maxwell books by Peggy Gifford. Ms. Fisher’s titles My Big Brother and My Big Sister—both Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Award winners—were also illustrated with photographs. Ms. Fisher’s photos can be seen in major museums around the world, including the Brooklyn Museum, London’s Victoria and Albert Museum, and the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris. She lives in Cornwall, Connecticut.

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