Sparky! written by Jenny Offill, illustrated by Chris Appelhans will be treasured all over the world by children who want a pet but can't have one. The girl in the story gets a promise from mom, "...as long as it doesn't need to be walked or bathed or fed," she can have a pet. So what does she do? She heads to her school librarian! Oh, yes, this will also be treasured by librarians all over the world too. She finds the perfect pet. You'll have to read Sparky! yourself to find out what happened and to enjoy this slightly offbeat book.
The illustrations were rendered in watercolor and pencil. The limited palette sets an interesting mood. It's quiet, not quite somber, but still lighthearted. It will give parents pause when they make a promise and then have to keep it. It's a bit unusual, but I like it. It reminds me of life, you try to fit in and work around a parent that says no. You succeed, but in the end, you still really don't fit in. I'll use it in Storytime and suggest it to parents and teachers. I'd use it with children from 4 or 5 years-old to third grade.