Glenn McCoy Penny Lee and Her TV

ISBN 13: 9780786806614

Penny Lee and Her TV

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9780786806614: Penny Lee and Her TV
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Peggy Lee loves to watch television so much that she has no time for anything else, but one day when the television stops working, her dog Mr. Barkley shows her some of the other fun things they can do.

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Review:

If you think your kid has a serious TV addiction, you haven't met Penny Lee. Not only does this girl have 300 favorite shows (including Pinky Poodle's Pool Party and Puppy Puppet's Playhouse), even her dreams have commercial breaks. (Of course, the fact that she sleeps on top of the TV set can't help.)

One morning, Penny wakes up to find the screen cold and dark. "She tried the remote. She shook the TV, but nothing happened. 'Help!' Penny Lee yelled. 'Call 911! Call the fire department! Call the National Guard!'" Fortunately for her, she's got a faithful canine who--not coincidentally, we find out later--has been looking for the chance to get more attention from his owner. Floppy-eared Mr. Barkley helps Penny Lee transport her set to the repair shop, but along the way the two (well, three, including the TV) find all sorts of opportunities for fun: playing hide-and-seek, skipping rope (or power cord, in this case), cloud-watching, even fishing. Could Penny possibly have found a life outside of TV? It's too soon to tell, but "that night, when Penny fell asleep, her dreams were commercial free."

Glenn McCoy puts his newspaper-comic skills to good use here, with an animated pigtailed Penny and excellent expressions from poor, long-suffering Mr. Barkley. (Readers will recognize his style from editorial cartoons in The New York Times and USA Today, or, more famously, his strip The Duplex.) McCoy's storytelling talent might not quite be up to this longer format yet, but he makes a respectable first showing. (Ages 4 to 8) --Paul Hughes

From School Library Journal:

reSchool-Grade 3-Parents are always looking for ways to get their children away from the television set. This book deals with just this situation without the nagging that adults are prone to do. Penny Lee watches TV all day and sleeps on it all night. All her activities take place in front of it. Her dog, Mr. Barkley, tries everything to get her attention but is unable to compete with the tube. One day, Penny Lee wakes to find her set cold and dark, and Mr. Barkley suggests taking it to the repair shop. Once outside, the child discovers the world. She finds that everything is bright and colorful and tries to adjust the light with the TV remote. On the way to the shop, she sees girls jumping rope and, with Mr. Barkley twirling, jumps the television cord. Through the course of the day, the TV plays less of a role in Penny's activities, and when she and her pup return to the shop to pick the set up and find the store closed, Penny Lee isn't even upset. "That night her dreams were commercial free." The cartoon art is lively and engaging. At the beginning of the story, the television takes center stage in every scene. Later, it is smaller and in the background, showing its diminishing role in the girl's life. This is a humorous and entertaining tale that kids and parents alike will enjoy.
Sheilah Kosco, Rapides Parish Library, Alexandria, LA
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

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