"I cannot sleep unless I am surrounded by books."


Friday, March 23, 2007

Toys Go Out: Being the Adventures of a Knowledgeable Stingray, a Toughy Little Buffalo, and Someone Called Plastic

Toys Go Out: Being the Adventures of a Knowledgeable Stingray, a Toughy Little Buffalo, and Someone Called Plastic
Author: Emily Jenkins
Illustrator: Paul Zelinsky
Publisher: Random House
ISBN-10: 0375836047
ISBN-13: 978-0375836046

Kindergarten-Grade 3

I loved this book! Toys Go Out is the enchanting and completely charming story of the secret lives of toys. They come to life at night and have worries and concerns just like children do. They can also be jealous of each other and the attention and love each one gets which makes it a great book to get for siblings.

The cast of characters is wonderful. There’s Lumphy the Buffalo, who is afraid of taking a bath in the washing machine but finds it’s not so bad after all. Then there is sweet and gentle Plastic who isn’t quite sure of what he is and feels terribly left out until he finds out just exactly what he is (won’t tell you what he is – read the book). Lastly, there is Stingray who thinks he’s a real stingray the day he finds himself in the bathtub. Each of these wonderful toys belongs to Little Girl and they all love her dearly and want to be her favorite.

The story is lovely and each chapter is a separate but connected adventure in the life of these toys. Any child who has ever loved one of her toys will love this book as will adults. The suggested age is kindergarten to grade 3, but older children will love this as well. My granddaughter Jasmine who is four, loves this book to death and laughs aloud at certain parts. Her one year old little brother loves it too and he loves pointing to the drawings of the characters.

The illustrations are just as enchanting as the story and are very expressive. This book makes me think of the Velveteen Rabbit, although these toys definitely do not get forgotten. It just has that same sense of wonder and magic. Highly recommended!

Book Description from the publisher:

Lumphy is a stuffed buffalo. StingRay is a stuffed stingray. And Plastic... well, Plastic isn't quite sure what she is. They all belong to the Little Girl who lives on the high bed with the fluffy pillows. A very nice person to belong to.

But outside of the Little Girl's room things can be confusing. Like when Lumphy gets sticky with peanut butter on a picnic, why is he called "dirty"? Or when StingRay jumps into the bathtub, what will happen to her fur? And where in the house can they find the Little Girl a birthday present that she will love the most?

Together is best for these three best friends. Together they look things up in the dictionary, explore the basement, and argue about the meaning of life. And together they face dogs, school, television commercials, the vastness of the sea and the terrifying bigness of the washing machine.

With all the appeal of a classic, here are six linked stories form Emily Jenkins, and illustrated by Caldecott winning Paul O. Zelinsky that showcase the unforgettable adventures--and misadventures-- of three extraordinary friends.

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