You’re Mean, Lily Jean

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You’re Mean, Lily Jean (Frieda Wishinsky, author. Kady MacDonald Denton, illustrator. North Winds Press, 2009)

You're mean Lily Jean

This is a gem of a picture book from a well-known Canadian author. The girls and I finally borrowed it from the library again after reading it for the first time a few years ago. Our second sign-out did not disappoint and I’ve taken better notice of its humour and the engaging illustrations. Snooty Lily Jean moves to the neighbourhood and immediately breaks up a sister playmate duo. Carly, the youngest sister, is intentionally left out, so agrees to anything that Lily Jean suggests so that she can play with the older girls. Carly is delegated to the role of the baby that crawls, the cow that moos and eats grass and the dog that sits under the table and says ‘bow-wow’. But dogs are smart, and so is Carly. Dogs also like to dig in the sand; so does Carly. She plays Lily Jean’s game and wins. Look for the fantastic one-liners in the final pages of this picture book. The topics of bullying, standing up for yourself and forgiveness are touched on in a light, kid-friendly manner, making this picture book thoroughly enjoyable for my girls (and their mom).

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