Nanette’s Baguette by Mo Willems Reviewed by Connie Nordhielm Wooldridge

Nanette’s Baguette by Mo Willems; illustrated by the author. Hyperion Books, 2916. 32 pages; $17.99 (hardcover); reading level: ages 4-8.

If you’re on the lookout for every word that rhymes with “Nanette” and “baguette,” this is the book for you. Tucked away in the playful pile-up of rhymes (and it is quite the pile-up!) is the story of the girl-frog Nanette sent by her mother to purchase a baguette from Juliette…all by herself…for the very first time. Giving in to her impulse to nibble, Nanette fails to return with the baguette, contemplates moving to Tibet (“as far away as you can get”), and is “beset with regret.” Instead of scolding, Mom gives her a hug as warm as “a million baguettes” and escorts her back to Juliette’s for a reset. The illustrations are handcrafted cardboard and paper constructions, photographed and then digitally enhanced. The final two-page spread will leave readers casting about for a message:  Are moms only human? Does Nanette have to pay for her failure after all? Are baguettes simply too, too irresistible? This is author/illustrator Willems at his best: talented, wacky, hilarious, and warm. It’s a sure bet:  You won’t regret getting this book about Nanette’s baguette!  

Connie Nordhielm Wooldridge, Author

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