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Baby Oscar's half birthday is full cause for celebration in this amusing tale of an urban family outing, affectionately told by the inimitable Bob Graham.
"Perfect day for a half birthday,"
says Oscar's dad.
The birthday boy waves his wet fists.
"And a picnic," says Oscar's mom.
Oscar is six months old today, but the truth is that no one can wait for his whole birthday. So there's nothing else for Mom and Dad to do but pack some sandwiches, park Oscar in his stroller, and take older sister Millie — handmade fairy wings attached — to the "half country" of their urban park for a half-birthday party. As always in the warm, quirky world of Bob Graham, the joy is in the details — a stop in a graffitied tunnel as the train rushes overhead; the expressions on Oscar's face as he watches a single leaf fall; the little half candle on his cake; and the impromptu gathering of admiring park visitors who join, one by one, in the hearty birthday song. With his jaunty watercolors full of charming surprises and a gently humorous text, Bob Graham creates an endearing, unconventional family readers will be happy to meet, and they'll be tickled to join in their celebration.
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Bob Graham is the award-winning creator of many books for children, including JETHRO BYRD, FAIRY CHILD, winner of the Kate Greenaway Medal; "LET'S GET A PUP!" SAID KATE, a BOSTON GLOBE-HORN BOOK Award winner; MAX, a PUBLISHERS WEEKLY Best Book of the Year; and, most recently, TALES FROM THE WATERHOLE. Of OSCAR'S HALF BIRTHDAY, he says, "This book germinated from a perfect Sunday spent on London's Hampstead Heath looking at a birthday party close by. When the cake was produced and the well-known chorus began, the song caught like wildfire as most of the picnickers on the hillside joined in." Bob Graham currently lives in Australia.From Booklist:
PreS-K. Graham, the author of Let's Get a Pup (2001), introduces a similarly unconventional family (both Mom and Dad wear their hair in braids), whose love for one another overflows the pages. The interracial family's star is Oscar; it's his half-year birthday. To celebrate, Oscar, his parents, and his older sister, Milly (complete with fairy wings made from hangers), head off to the park. The story ambles rather than actually takes off. The family crosses the bridge to the park. Traffic noise begins to drone, and birds can be heard. Once the blanket is down, Oscar attracts other picnickers with his cute looks, and everyone joins in a rousing chorus of "Happy Birthday." Back at home, after baths, Milly falls asleep, knowing that her birthday will be next. More than in the events, the charm here lies in the ink-and-watercolor artwork, which highlights family close-ups and (literally) bird's-eye views of city life that subtly slide into a more bucolic setting. Equally important is the story's mood: the characters' happiness is contagious. Ilene Cooper
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Book Description Candlewick, 2005. Hardcover. Condition: New. Never used!. Seller Inventory # P110763626996
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