Thursday, August 30, 2012

Sadie and Ratz

Sadie and Ratz. Sonya Hartnett. Illustrated by Ann James. 2012. Candlewick Press. 64 pages.

I am Hannah. These are my hands. Their names are Sadie and Ratz. We live in a house with my mom and dad and my stick insect, Pin.

Hannah is a little girl with a big imagination and two naughty hands. One of her hands is named Sadie, the other hand is Ratz. When they are on the rampage, look out! For her hands behave as wild beasts. And these beasts like to declare war on her four year old brother. Of course, Sadie and Ratz are forever getting in trouble for picking on her brother, for hurting him, etc. But how can Hannah live at peace with her horrible baby brother? The relationship between the two remains TENSE, TENSE, TENSE as Baby Brother starts blaming Sadie and Ratz for things that he himself did. It's one thing for Hannah to get in trouble when she's actually naughty and deserves it, quite another to get in trouble for stuff her brother did and blamed on her. So she decides that if Sadie and Ratz GO ON VACATION they won't be near the scene of any crimes...

This is a relatively dark early reader about sibling rivalry. I say dark because most early readers don't have any hint or shadow of darkness in tone or theme--at all. It does examine the emotion of anger and temper tantrums. The illustrations are great at capturing the darker emotions.

While this one isn't exactly a new favorite, I definitely liked it well enough to recommend it.

Sadie and Ratz aren't animals. "But they behave like wild beasts," says Dad. (1-2)
Sadie is the boss. She is the same size as Ratz, but she is meaner (7).
When Sadie and Ratz are on the rampage, look out! (9)

Read Sadie and Ratz
  • If you're looking for an early chapter book to share with children
  • If you are looking for a book about naughty hands children

© 2012 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews


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