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Baa Baa Black Sheep
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This charming story told in lyrical verse will inspire young readers to share the best of themselves. An industrious black sheep has wool aplenty, but little else for her friends. Horse needs hay, Mouse needs cheese, and Pig needs slop, but the poor black sheep has none of these. When her dissatisfied friends confront Sheep about her inability to share, they find that their lovely friend has knitted a special gift for each of them with her very own wool. Clever illustrations reveal delightful surprises as endearing new characters frolic from page to page in bold, generous color.

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K-Gr 3-As she did with Itsy, Bitsy Spider (Charlesbridge, 1998), Trapani takes an old rhyme and adds her own spin to it. Illustrated in muted watercolors, with a setting suggestive of a Victorian winter, the book features Ms. Sheep and her friends, all of whom want something from her. Kittens want milk, a pig wants slop, the dog wants bones, and a horse wants hay. Alas, except for the master, the dame, and the little boy who lives down the lane, the sheep just can't fill her neighbors' requests. As a result, all of them are in a huff, and cry out "Boo, boo, black sheep, shame on you!" However, she has a surprise for them. As it so happens, she has been hard at work knitting a woolen surprise for each and every one of them-mittens for the cats, a shawl for the horse, a fine hat for the pig. In the end, everyone has learned the value of sharing, and they come to her door loaded with presents. The illustrations are pleasing and the expressions on the faces engaging. The story itself works, although it's not particularly engaging. Other old favorites on sharing and caring, such as Angela Johnson's Julius (Orchard, 1993) or Nancy Carlson's Harriet's Halloween Candy (First Avenue, 1994) are just as much fun.-Roxanne Burg, Thousand Oaks Library, CA Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.

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