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King, Stephen Michael: Bella's Bad Hair Day.

** KING, Stephen Michael Bella's Bad Hair Day ISBN 9781743313619 SCIS 1622965

** MILNE, Simon (text) Chantal Stewart (illus.) The Dance Teacher ISBN 9781743313312 SCIS 1622973 Allen & Unwin, 2013 unpaged $24.99

** van LOON, Joan (text) Chantal Stewart (illus.) Between the Pages New Frontier, 2013 unpaged $24.95 ISBN 9781921928444 SCIS 1597059

Three very individual picture books, each beautifully designed and produced. The Dance Teacher is a charming story of Isabelle who desperately wants to be a ballet dancer. She starts at the beginning with the inspiring Miss Sylvie and, unlike her friends, progresses through each level of the ballet school, then graduates from the formal academy and finally becomes a prima ballerina who travels the world. Beautifully illustrated--including accurate depictions of ballet positions and steps--the book includes amusing endpapers and a cover illustration in which the costumes are sprinkled with tiny sparkles. Equally enchanting but written and illustrated in a totally different style is Between the Pages, the rumbustious tale of Billy and Jack. These two small boys career through the forest pursued by numerous very scary animals. They are carrying their picture book and turn the pages as they race on to their next encounter until they land in a gentler place ... The illustrations capture perfectly the adventures of these boisterous little boys and again the endpapers, depicting the frightening and the safe places, are indicative of the thoughtful design, although the typeface in this book is on the small side. By contrast Bella's Bad Hair Day is a nonsense story with little logic. Bella's parents are too busy with their painting and piano playing to sympathise with the plight of her horrible hair. Her hairdresser suggests an unacceptably drastic solution so Bella dreams of her own solutions including lots of far-fetched items that she could wear to cover her hair. The illustrations have the same madcap feel as the wildly impulsive Bella. Ages 3-6.

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Title Annotation:The Dance Teacher; Between the Pages
Author:Douglas, Elizabeth
Publication:Reading Time
Article Type:Book review
Date:Nov 1, 2013
Previous Article:Kane, Kim (text) Sara Acton (illus.): Esther's Rainbow.
Next Article:Lea, Elizabeth (text) Chantal Stewart (illus.): My Band.

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