Poppy's Return (Tales from Dimwood Forest)

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9780060000127: Poppy's Return (Tales from Dimwood Forest)

Poppy returns ... with big trouble. Family trouble.

Poppy and Rye don't know what to do about their son Ragweed Junior's attitude. He is rude, he is crude, and he has dyed his fur to look like Mephitis, his skunk friend. In short, Ragweed Junior is very much a teenager. Even Ereth, the cantankerous porcupine, with his salty swearing, can't straighten him out. Then Poppy gets an urgent request to return to her old home, Gray House, where her aging parents, Sweet Cicely and Lungwort, are in difficulties. Not only does she agree to go back, she decides to take Junior, in hopes traveling together will bring them together. But when Junior's skunk pal and Ereth join the party, the trip doesn't quite go as expected. And when Poppy recalls she did not get along with her parents, things become even more complicated.

Poppy's Return is a hilarious adventure tale about family: the gleeful joys, the farcical sorrows, the high emotions, and the low comedy of living with and without relations. It's also about bears, bulldozers, and the boisterous antics of young mice doing the stinky red. And sugared slug soup, there's always Ereth to stir the stew of Poppy’s rich and rewarding life.

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About the Author:

Avi is the award-winning author of more than seventy-five books for young readers, ranging from animal fantasy to gripping historical fiction, picture books to young adult novels. Crispin: The Cross of Lead won the Newbery Medal, and The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle and Nothing But the Truth were awarded Newbery Honors. He is also the author of the popular Poppy series. Avi lives outside Denver, Colorado. You can visit him online at www.avi-writer.com.



Brian Floca's illustrations have appeared in several books by Avi, including the six volumes of the Poppy stories and the graphic novel City of Light, City of Dark. For younger readers, he is the author and illustrator of Moonshot: The Flight of Apollo II as well as the highly praised books Lightship, a Robert F. Sibert Honor Book and ALA Notable Book; The Racecar Alphabet, also an ALA Notable Book; and Five Trucks.

From School Library Journal:

Grade 3-6–In this latest installment in the series, Avi gives his animal characters an uncomfortable humanity. Poppy, now the mother of 11, faces middle age with sighs and regrets while her troublesome son Ragweed Jr. suffers the pangs of adolescence. When humans threaten to destroy Poppy's parents' home, she and Ragweed make the journey together, developing respect for one another's courage. This book lacks the delightful charm of the previous books. The deer mouse's midlife crisis and her son's adolescent rantings aren't well suited to their animal natures and won't be understood by the target audience, and the dialogue ranges from trite to grating. Avi devotes over half the book to the family conflict and very few pages to the attempted destruction of the farm, which, when it does come, is too facilely resolved. While Ereth the porcupine's colorful metaphors will please readers, there is little else to hold this book together. Unless series readers demand it, look to other titles such as M. I. McAllister's Urchin of the Riding Stars (Hyperion, 2005) for animal adventure.–Caitlin Augusta, The Darien Library, CT
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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