After losing Coco the class pet at a shopping mall, second-grader Janine learns that the stuffed rabbit has mistakenly been given as part of a toy distribution at a local hospital.
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Kindergarten-Grade 2AMrs. Robin's second grade class pet, Coco, a stuffed rabbit, has a journal. A drawing is held each day to see who Coco will go home with, and this time the lucky winner is Janine, who will be able to keep the toy for the whole weekend. She is also the one who will get to contribute Coco's journal entry, written from his point of view. Janine takes Coco everywhere with her, and even reads him a bedtime story. But the next day, when she sits down to lunch with her family after a long day at the mall, she realizes that the toy is lost and must face her classmates without him on Monday. The children all pitch in to find him, and eventually they doAjust as he is being given to a child at a local hospital. The class decides that the girl needs Coco more than they do, and Janine writes his final journal entry about his new home and new name. Bold, colorful gouache and colored-pencil illustrations, some of which are framed in a notebooklike print, are appealing, as is the totally satisfying conclusion.ADeAnn Tabuchi, San Anselmo Public Library, CA
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Ages 5^-8. The pride of Mrs. Robin's second-grade class, the stuffed rabbit Coco goes home with one of the students each night, and the lucky child gets to write the visit's events in Coco's voice, in Coco's diary. But when it's poor Janine's turn, she loses Coco in the mall, and despite a frantic search and posters with Coco's picture, the rabbit remains gone. Finally, the second-graders realize that a toy drive at the mall might mean that Coco has wound up at the children's ward of a local hospital. Sure enough, a wheelchair-bound girl gets Coco, which, the kids realize, belongs with its new owner. They'll miss Coco, but in a last communique, the rabbit assures them that it will keep in touch. Cute and clever, this is so full of fun graphic elements children will look at it again and again. The jacket design looks like Coco's diary, an effect carried out on the pages' borders, and the inside pages of the diary are reproduced in the hand printing of various class members. There is plenty to look at here--and sharp eyes will spot where and when Coco gets lost. Ilene Cooper
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