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Reviews for Flora and the Flamingo

by Molly Idle

Publishers Weekly
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Without providing a backstory for the eponymous pair's curious meeting, Idle (Nighty Night, Noah) imagines a wordless encounter between a lithe, sultry flamingo and a pudgy little girl in a bathing suit, swim cap, and flippers. The call-and-response nature of their dance-the flamingo poses in a series of sinuous movements on the left, Flora does her awkward best to mimic them on the right-produces a series of beautifully lighthearted tableaus. At first, Flora models her movements on the flamingo's, unbeknownst to the bird. A series of stumbles draws a sharp reaction from the flamingo and a sulk from Flora, but the flamingo relents and the two collaborate on a graceful duet that ends with a joyous flourish. Inset flaps add drama by revealing new poses, and Idle's crisp, confident drafting produces a reading experience akin to flipping through a series of animation cells. There's an undertone of a growing-up story, too, as Flora almost seems to shed childhood self-consciousness and take her first tentative steps into womanhood. It's seamless and dynamic visual storytelling. Ages 3-up. Agent: Lori Nowicki, Painted Words. (Mar.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.


Kirkus
Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Klutzy but endearing Flora (dumpily clad in swimsuit, bathing cap and flippers) and a dancing flamingo are the protagonists of this whimsical, wordless tale, which will have special appeal for budding ballerinas. Initially playing hard to get, then gradually warming to her overtures, the flamingo literally takes Flora under his wing and teaches her to dance. The story of the evolving camaraderie between this unlikely duo is told with humor and compassion through the use of a delicate flowing line and a limited, subtle color palette (mostly pink). The occasional simple rectangular fold-down flap cleverly allows each character to reveal a quirky new gesture or change of mood when the story demands. Illustrator Idle's prior experience as a DreamWorks animator is evident in the flowing, musical quality of the illustrations; one can almost hear the 3/4 beat of a waltz in the background. The seamless grace of the flamingo's dance contrasts humorously with Flora's faltering steps, but by the end of the story, they swoop, plunge and soar together like old ballet partners. Courageous use of white space--several pages contain a solitary waterlily--and a confident animated style are used to good effect in this sweet story of a young girl and her unlikely mentor. (Picture book. 3-6)]] Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.


School Library Journal
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PreS-Gr 2-This charming story begs to be an animated short-unsurprising, given the author's animation background-yet it works remarkably well as a wordless lift-the-flap book. Sparely illustrated, its full-spread white backgrounds with delicate pink-blossom borders emphasize the actions of the two protagonists. A lone flamingo lands onto the nearly blank expanse of the title page. Soon, it is joined by little Flora, who provides a sweetly round counterpoint to the angular bird. She furtively imitates the flamingo's moves with utmost concentration and extremely comical poses until it catches on and squawks angrily, driving her away in a sulk. Friendship triumphs in the end, and the unlikely couple dance together and joyously cannonball into water on the last double foldout page. As neither flamingos nor little girls are known for their inherent elegance, the duo's surprisingly graceful moves are reminiscent of dancing hippos and ostriches from Disney's Fantasia. This delightful romp is a worthy addition to most collections and will appeal to flamingo and ballet fans alike.-Yelena Alekseyeva-Popova, formerly at Chappaqua Library, NY (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Horn Book
(c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

In this unique wordless picture book, a little girl mimics a flamingo's movements. The bird, at first annoyed, eventually relents and teaches her ballet. The book is cinematic, comedic, and balletic, with dynamic pacing facilitated by ingenious flaps. Spare illustrations in tutu-pink with pops of yellow allow the characters' chemistry--and the physical comedy--to take center stage. (c) Copyright 2013. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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