Envious over snobbish rival Lucinda's beauty-parlor perm, Junie Mae decides to sell her new kittens in order to raise money for her own perm, but when Lucinda offers to buy all five kittens, Junie Mae begins to realize the value of what she already has.
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Determined to buy a beauty-parlor perm just like "snooty" Lucinda Bodine's, Junie May tries to sell some kittens to her farmer neighbors when she accompanies her grandfather on his veterinary rounds. But the only prospective buyer is "uppity" Lucinda, who would probably not take care of them, and so Junie May decides to forego her fancy hairdo and make sure the kittens have good homes. Everyone's desires are fulfilled (except Lucinda's) when friendly Mrs. Olsen takes a kitten in exchange for a "blue-ribbon" braiding of Junie May's hair. Martin's ( The Dragon Nanny ) chatty story with its flavorsome '50s setting combines a few too many themes--the girls' animosity, the coveted curls, the kittens, the tour of the countryside. The characters seem predictable and interchangeable--"Ooooo, kittens!" say both villainous Lucinda and kindly Jack and Zack in separate scenes, and the dialogue can seem stilted or didactic. Hearn's ( Dad's Dinosaur Day ) winsome, cartoonlike watercolors are appropriate for the period but do nothing to focus the awkward narrative. Ages 5-8.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.
By the author of The Dragon Nanny (1988), a neatly plotted tale about one Junie Mae, a small girl who hopes, while making the rounds with Grandpa (an old-time country animal doctor), to get enough money to have a perm, like ``snooty Lucinda Bodine.'' Junie Mae's hopes are buoyed when she's given five kittens at Grandpa's first stop; but though she finds several takers, no one can pay for a kitten--except Lucinda. Suddenly, Junie Mae has a change of heart: she can't sell a kitten to Lucinda, who doesn't even care for her new bike; instead, she'll give them to those who want them. Unexpectedly, just like her Grandpa, she gets in trade not money but some other useful things, including a new hairdo, consisting of a stylish braid that makes her look ``positively eight...maybe nine.'' Dawson's expressively skewed perspectives, sly characterizations, and whimsical details give her illustrations a jaunty air that's right in the spirit of the good-humored narrative. (Picture book/Young reader. 5-8) -- Copyright ©1994, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
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Book Description Atheneum, 1994. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110027624501