John Willy and Freddy McGee

by Holly Meade

John Willy and Freddy McGee are guinea pigs, and they're bored by the same old... read more

John Willy and Freddy McGee are guinea pigs, and they're bored by the same old routine. So when their cage is left open by mistake they're off and running. "Run, John Willy! Run, run, Freddy McGee!" encourages the energizing, urgent narrative voice of this marvelous picture book that bursts into an explosion of color and festival of language as soon as the guinea pigs make their escape. "Circling the hassock, scattering the marbles, squeezing beneath the table they scooted!" Holly Meade's scintillating text holds its own on dazzling pages of color showing the two small guinea pigs running through brilliantly decorated rooms that each have their own distinct and vibrant palette. A pool table is almost the animals' undoing, however--taking refuge in the comfort of its tunnels (guinea pigs know tunnels), they are unaware of the cat up above, who cannot resist batting the balls into the holes. Making their escape from this hilarious encounter at last, the guinea pigs trace their route back toward the safety of their cage, passing again through each of the rooms, where the author/artist has left clues for sharp eyes to discover that the human inhabitants of this house have come and gone since the animals last passed through. Spectacular design and masterful pacing round out this superb and delightful picture book. Honor Book, 1999 Charlotte Zolotow Award ; Honor Book, 1998 CCBC Caldecott Award Discussion. (Ages 3-7)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 1998

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