Saturday, May 14, 2011


Van Allsburg, Chris. (2006). Probuditi! Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company.

Literary Genre: Fiction (Picture Story Book)

Calvin’s birthday gift is tickets for him and a friend to go see “Lomax the Magnificent, the world-famous magician and hypnotist”. After the performance, Calvin and his friend decide to do some hypnotizing of their own and shortly after Calvin’s little sister Trudy is barking, whining, panting, and walking on all fours like a dog. The real magic of this story is the humorous events that take place as the boys spend the afternoon trying to snap Trudy back to normal. Van Allsburg’s incredible, sepia pencil drawings will hold the attention of readers and pull them back into the 1940s where this story takes place.

I absolutely love this story. Many of Chris Van Allsburg’s books are magical but the realistic nature of this story makes it much more magical to me. Calvin and Trudy’s relationship is portrayed very true to the complicated but loving dynamics of siblings and is one in which readers will most certainly relate to. The 1940s setting is a nice touch because it represents the perfect childhood neighborhood and again readers will be able to make connections to their own childhood shenanigans. This story could be used in the classroom for a variety of things, but I would focus on the development of the relationships between characters.

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