Billy is a bit of a worrier. He worries about hats and shoes. He worries about clouds and rain and giant birds. Most of all he worries about staying at other people's houses. His mum and dad try to help, but still Billy worries...until a visit to his grandma's shows him how to overcome his fears with the aid of his imagination - and some tiny worry dolls.
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Anthony Browne is one of the most popular and stylistically distinctive children's book artists, with a number of outstanding titles to his credit, including Gorilla, My Dad and Into the Forest. In 2000, he won the prestigious Hans Christian Andersen Award (for Illustration) for his services to children's literature. He lives in Kent.From School Library Journal:
PreSchool-Grade 2–In bed at night Billy frets about everything, from standard clothing items (shoes) to normal weather phenomena (clouds). His parents do their best to reassure him, but to no avail. Staying over at Grandma's, he is overwhelmed with anxiety until she gives him Guatemalan worry dolls, the perfect antidote for night terrors. This works until he starts to worry that he's overburdening the dolls. The boy's clever way of resolving the problem is sure to bring smiles to readers. The story is bookended by illustrations of Billy, first literally weighed down with apprehension, and finally full of optimistic self-confidence. An opening full-color illustration in watercolor and pencil depicts Billy lying stiffly in his bed. This is followed by a series of his monochromatic fright-filled imaginings layered with background details that add levels of interest for close observers (his pillow reveals a worried profile while his wallpaper is covered with shoe prints). The bright colors of Guatemalan yarns and patterns are echoed throughout. Billy's parents and grandmother are rounded, comforting figures, but in almost every spread it is the boy's small, pale face, pinched with worry, that is given the most visual weight and holds readers' attention. Children will appreciate that Billy's problems are solved both through the efforts of encouraging adults and through his own resourcefulness. A witty way to address the issue of ever-present childhood presentiments.–Kate McClelland, Perrot Memorial Library, Old Greenwich, CT
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