Friday 17 January 2014

Billie B Brown – The Missing Tooth

Billie B Brown – The Missing Tooth by Sally Rippin, illustrated by Aki Fukuoka (Hardie Grant Egmont)
PB RRP $7.95
ISBN 978-174297310-4
Reviewed by Emma Cameron

Billie B Brown is the only one in her class who has never lost a tooth. But one of hers is now wiggly! Mum tells her to stop playing with it and that it will come out when it’s ready. Dad offers to pull it out for her but Billie declines, because that would hurt. As it turns out, it’s only a few hours before the tooth does fall out. It leaves Billie’s mouth when she trips over during a game of chasey at recess, hitting her chin on the ground.

Her teacher gives her a tissue to wrap the tooth in to keep it safe and Billie is excited that the tooth fairy will visit soon. When Billie arrives home she unwraps the tissue to show Mum, but the tooth is missing. Though Billie is at first sad about this she quickly comes up with a solution. She decides to try leaving a note for the tooth fairy to explain what happened and ask for money anyway.

Her letter is displayed on a page that gives readers a great example of this text type as well as demonstrating what funny thoughts Billie has. My favourites were ’PS If you don’t believe me, check my mouth’ followed by ‘PPS I will try to sleep with my mouth open, but if it’s closed, could you come back in a little while?” Her note does the trick and in the morning she wakes to find a coin under her pillow.

Four short chapters in large font are spread over forty-two pages and they skillfully include many of the worries and concerns that young readers can identify with, as well as a few simple but sweet illustrations to break up the text. It’s the perfect type of story for those embarking on the earliest chapter books.

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