Wallace's Lists

Wallace's Lists

by Barbara Bottner, Olof Landstrom, Gerald Kruglik
     
 

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Wallace, a mouse, could do almost anything. Anything that is, as long as he had a list.

  1. Wallace is a shy mouse.
  2. He writes lists. Lists of recipes, funny words, and frightening experiences.
  3. Wallace meets his lively neighbor named Albert.
  4. His world is swiftly opened to new delights, such as painting and music.
  5. Wallace and Albert experience the

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Overview

Wallace, a mouse, could do almost anything. Anything that is, as long as he had a list.

  1. Wallace is a shy mouse.
  2. He writes lists. Lists of recipes, funny words, and frightening experiences.
  3. Wallace meets his lively neighbor named Albert.
  4. His world is swiftly opened to new delights, such as painting and music.
  5. Wallace and Albert experience the excitement of an adventure, and Wallace discovers a new joy.
  6. Friendship.

Editorial Reviews

Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
“Worried little Wallace … is an endearing hero … and Bottner and Kruglik chronicle his blossoming with affectionate wit.”
Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
"Worried little Wallace … is an endearing hero … and Bottner and Kruglik chronicle his blossoming with affectionate wit."
The Bulletin for the Center for Children's Books
“Worried little Wallace … is an endearing hero … and Bottner and Kruglik chronicle his blossoming with affectionate wit.”
Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
“Worried little Wallace … is an endearing hero … and Bottner and Kruglik chronicle his blossoming with affectionate wit.”
Publishers Weekly
Three reasons to read coauthors Bottner and Kruglik's (Pish and Posh) new tale: 1. The two unlikely mouse heroes-the cautious, list-making Wallace and his light-hearted companion Albert-develop a friendship in which Wallace's shortcomings turn out to be assets. 2. The book might dare readers to discover something new about themselves, too. 3. The plot inspires Landstrom's (the Boo and Baa series) tongue-in-cheek artwork, which provides lots of witty entertainment. Wallace, a bespectacled mouse in shorts and a bowtie, wants to say hello to his new neighbor, but he can't-it's not on his list of things to do that day. (Readers are treated to many of Wallace's lists, written neatly on lined paper.) Albert wears an old undershirt, sports long hair and never hesitates to revise his plans: "Changing my mind is an adventure," he tells Wallace, who listens, appalled but rapt. Eventually Albert's rash adventure-seeking casts Wallace in the reluctant but gratifying role of hero. He remains steadfast in crises, it turns out, and comforts Albert when his wacky plans go awry. Taking a leaf from classic '30s cartoons, Landstrom furnishes interiors with many small but solid-looking items, visual tokens of Wallace's need for familiarity. His hilarious spreads make liberal use of crosshatching and gestural lines: cats are drenched with water; lightning strikes; luggage carousels send Wallace flying. Bottner and Kruglik don't insist on a magic transformation from Wallace-he just has to learn to bend a little. This one goes on the recommended list. Ages 4-7. (June) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature - Karen Leggett
Wallace lives strictly according to his lists. Albert just lives. "When Albert called out, ‘I'm off to paint some ducks,' Wallace wished painting was on his list." Albert likes adventures. Just the thought of adventures makes Wallace so nervous he can't sleep. Children will easily identify themselves—and probably their parents—with either Albert or Wallace, but along with lots of opportunities to laugh, young readers will also learn what's really important about lists and life. When a thunderstorm threatens Albert's plans to fly his plane, Wallace races to warn him at the airport, where his map gets soggy, he is bumped around on the luggage belt and chased by a cat. Wallace then makes a long list of his adventures, followed by the most important list of all: "My best friend: #1. Albert." There are plenty of giggles along with the warmth and the unstated but powerful messages about friendship and spontaneity. Olof Landstrom's brightly-colored illustrations share the fun and the compassion, and, of course, the lists. The story is read on an accompanying CD in a voice that has just the right measure of gentleness, as well as soft background music and tones to mark the page turns. It is worth adding Wallace's Lists to your list, for classroom browsing, library story hour, or bedtime at home. Reviewer: Karen Leggett
Children's Literature - Joan Kindig
Wallace the mouse is an inveterate list maker, which is not necessarily a bad thing. What makes it bad and very limiting for Wallace is that he never strays from his list. When a new mouse moves in across the hall, Wallace does not even say hello to him because saying hello is not on his list. Eventually he and Albert become friends but unlikely friends. Albert is a go-with-the-flow kind of guy and Wallace, well, Wallace is not. Being around Albert and his sense of adventure does eventually rub off on Wallace, especially when he thinks Albert is in danger. And when Wallace has his first real adventure, he finds he kind of likes it. Narrated by Zach Braff, this story of letting oneself enjoy life is a fun adjunct to the book upon which it is based. The animators chose not to give voice to the mice but to let the narration carry the story. At first this seemed odd but, in the end, it was clearly the way to go. Viewers will fall in love with Wallace as he struggles with his over-organized personality and begins to let some fun into his life. For children who stand on the periphery in classrooms, this is a DVD that can be helpful and fun. So, in Wallace's inimitable style, you should 1) buy this DVD, 2) share the wonderful story with your children, and 3) talk about spontaneity and creativity with them. Enjoy! Running time: 15 minutes. Reviewer: Joan Kindig, Ph.D.
Children's Literature
Wallace is a shy mouse who loves making lists: lists of all the clothes in his closet, lists of pets he would like, and "to do" lists for his day. But when he meets a new neighbor mouse, Albert, he's unable to engage in a friendship with him, as "saying hello to Albert" is not on his list; nor is joining Albert on an expedition to go painting. As their acquaintance progresses, however, Wallace tries on the idea that life might include the occasional adventure or two: that is to say, "anything that isn't planned for . . . anything that isn't on a list." And when Wallace needs to warn Albert about a dangerous storm that might interfere with his planned plane ride to Glockamorra, Wallace has adventures aplenty (to write down on a new list of adventures), and the best list of all to compose: "My best friend—1. Albert." It's satisfying to see the two mice, so opposite in personality and temperament, grow into a friendship together. And Landström's adorable watercolor illustrations add to the fun. But the story ultimately seems too reminiscent of Arnold Lobel's classic treatment of list-making in Frog and Toad Together, where Toad cannot run after his lost list, because "running after my list is not one of the things that I wrote on my list of things to do!" 2004, HarperCollins, Ages 4 to 7.
—Claudia Mills
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2-An earnest and likable mouse is so careful that he lives his life by lists. When a new neighbor introduces himself in the hallway of their apartment building, "Wallace would have liked to say, `Hello. My name is Wallace,' but saying hello was not on his list." Albert's spontaneity and joie de vivre slowly win him over. The story culminates in a whirlwind adventure through the airport, into a luxury high-rise, and then back home again, where Wallace makes another list with his new best friend's name on it. The writing is memorable, and the authors provide just the right details. Larger than life in all sorts of ways, the chubby Albert spouts wise statements such as "Laundry is laundry- but music is life!" Landstrom's pictures are expressive and witty, with soft colors, strong lines, and lots of personality. The world depicted is an intriguing one, an urban setting where the mice-sized mice coexist with human-sized humans. With its positive message about trying new experiences and embracing the horizon-expanding wonders of friendship, this picture book is a winner.-Lauralyn Persson, Wilmette Public Library, IL Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
A budding friendship begins, grows, and blossoms between two most unlikely characters: a shy mouse named Wallace and a confident, lively neighbor named Albert. Wallace has a penchant for lists and lives his life in lock-step with all that is delineated and predictable. In contrast, Albert is creative and spontaneous, seizing any opportunity to take off on an uncharted course, "smelling the roses," and enjoying painting, music, travel. Wallace does whatever is on his "to do" list, without deviation, whereas Albert welcomes the excitement of an adventure. An adventure according to Albert is anything that isn't planned. Yet thanks to Albert, Wallace does discover a new joy. A departure from his list leads Wallace to a departure of another sort: a frantic trip to the airport to warn his friend of stormy weather. The trip is aborted, but not without the realization that life can bring unanticipated pleasure and friendship. Cartoon characters move through the story with vitality and humor a young reader will relish, and a parent strapped with the routine and mundane will appreciate. (Picture book. 4-7)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780060002244
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
06/01/2004
Pages:
40
Sales rank:
653,653
Product dimensions:
8.50(w) x 11.00(h) x 0.34(d)
Lexile:
AD710L (what's this?)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

Barbara Bottner is the author of many favorites for young readers, including Rosa's Room, illustrated by Beth Spiegel; the ever-popular Bootsie Barker Bites, illustrated by Peggy Rathmann; and Bootsie Barker Ballerina, also an I Can Read Book, illustrated by G. Brian Karas. Together with her husband, Gerald Kruglik, Ms. Bottner has authored the award-winning picture book Wallace's Lists, illustrated by Olof Landström, and the I Can Read Book Pish and Posh, which she illustrated.

Olof Landstrom is the illustrator of many internationally successful books for children, including the Boo and Baa and Will series with Lena Landstrom, and Benny's Had Enough and Benny and the Binky by Barbro Lindgren. He lives in Sweden.

Gerald Kruglik is the coauthor of Pish and Posh and Wallace's List. The author lives in Florida.

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