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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
Oh, how we love Miss Clarice Bean. With her mop of blonde hair and excited eyes, she is breath of fresh air. We have come to expect the unexpected from this vivacious youngster, and Clarice does not disappoint in this eco-minded tale.
While learning about planet Earth in school, she is assigned a project on the environment. With no inspiration for how to begin, and desperately trying to avoid her partner, Robert Granger, who wants to do a project on who walks faster, a snail or a worm, Clarice focuses her attention on her brother, Kurt. Distressed, Kurt relates a newspaper headline: "Tree to Be Chopped Down on Navarino Street." and decides to protest by camping out in the tree. This leads to quite a good-humored family affair, with the whole clan sitting in the tree, complete with posters that say "Free the Tree." When Clarice's teacher, Mrs. Wilberton, scolds her for being late and failing to bring in a project, Clarice explains, "I've been up till all hours, saving the planet on my street." Clarice's project? Being an eco-warrior.
Author-illustrator Lauren Child pulls out all the stops in this wonderfully wacky and Earth-conscious tale. Her trademark collage illustrations have never been more creative, and her scribbly drawings add movement and a quirky twist to every layout. The text itself is another medium for evoking spirit and joy -- Child uses a variety of fonts in all sizes to express emotion. Fans of Clarice Bean will be familiar with her bright-eyed approach to life and her unconventional, and often hilarious, thoughts. Ms. Bean is a true force to be reckoned with -- and we can't wait to see whose feathers she ruffles next. (Amy Barkat)