In this heartwarming picture book, a very ugly bug wonders why she does not look like any of her other bug friends. They all have teeny tiny eyes, smooth green backs, and big fluttery wings, while she has big googly eyes, a wobbly head, a hairy back, and spotted purple legs. What she fails to realize is that the other bugs have these special physical characteristics because these features help them to escape being eaten by the hungry birds. Discouraged by her own hideous appearance, the very ugly bug decides to create a special disguise that will enable her to remain safe from the beaks of hungry birds. She designs a unique mask that makes her eyes look smaller, she wraps herself in leaves to make her back look smooth and green, and she uses a pair of flower petals to create wings. Unfortunately, when she is all dressed up, she looks even more attractive and appetizing to the neighboring birds. Before she knows it, a hungry blue bird swoops in to grab her causing her to scream and lose her entire disguise. Once the bird sees her ugly features, he flies away in search of a tastier looking bug. The other bugs applaud her success and help her realize that her own unique qualities are all that she needs to remain safe and secure in the world. During all of this chaos, she even manages to catch the attention of Mr. Ugly Bug, who thinks she is the most gorgeous creature in the world. The two ugly bugs eventually get married and create a large family of even uglier baby bugs. This wonderful story teaches children an important lesson about self-acceptance and shows them that being a unique individual can have plenty of useful benefits. Young children will enjoy the humorous text, as well as thebright, colorful illustrations. This charming picture book will make an excellent read-aloud selection. 2005, Tiger Tales/ME Media, Ages 4 to 8.
PreS-Gr 2-An ugly bug wonders why her three friends look different from her and they explain that their appearances help them to hide from hungry predators. She tries to disguise herself to look like spotty red bug, skinny green bug, and shiny blue bug, but her idea backfires and her new colorful appearance soon catches the attention of a bird. She panics, causing her eyes to grow bigger and the hair on her back to spike up. She is even uglier than before and the bird leaves her alone. However, Mr. Ugly Bug notices her and the two fall in love and have a bunch of babies who are "all even uglier than their parents!" Large, cartoon-style paintings clearly show the different insects and their attributes. Bold colors and an uncluttered layout encourage viewers to focus on the main character, who is charmingly goofy looking. Young children will be smiling as they discover the importance of being one's self. Pair this with one of the many versions of "The Ugly Duckling."-Kathleen Simonetta, Indian Trails Public Library District, Wheeling, IL Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
In this notably unsuccessful take on the "I don't want to stand out" theme, a bug-colorful but not particularly ugly in the cartoon illustrations-brushes off her friends' appreciative comments and dresses herself to look like them, but changes her tune after repulsing a predatory bird. Not only is the Lesson sledge-hammered home in the agenda-centered text ("Now I love the way I look!" exclaims the triumphant bug, before going off to mate with a dazzled suitor), but Pichon, along with adding inane comments in dialogue balloons, plasters several pictures with descriptive labels for viewers who have somehow missed the idea that the bug is supposed to be hideous. A similar premise gets more effective treatment in Andrew Clements's Big Al (1988), illustrated by Yoshi, and, more recently, in Graeme Base's Jungle Drums (2004). (Picture book. 6-8)