Bink & Gollie: By Golly What a Charmer!

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Bink & Gollie by Kate DiCamillo an Alison McGhee, illustrated by Tony Fucile

Bink and Gollie are two girls who are friends but could not be more different.  They live together yet apart, Bink in a cottage below the tree where Gollie’s ultra-modern tree house perches.  The two of them use their roller skates to get around town, but beyond that they agree on very little.  Everything from striped colorful socks to goldfish friends to imaginary mountain treks come between them.  In the end though, their friendship remains strong, bolstered by pancakes shared together.  The book is broken into three chapters each a vignette that is funny, charming and delightful. The book is written for beginning readers who will discover two amazing girls that they will long to share a stack of pancakes with too.

The authors have created two characters who are very different yet read as real people with their own quirks and interests.  Bink is younger, wilder and delightfully mussed.  Gollie is steady, level headed and yet has her own moments of imagination.  The authors did not feel constrained by the vocabulary of most beginning readers, instead they introduce young readers to longer words, taking time to put them in context and even define them.  This is a book that will have new readers stretching at just the right pace.

Fucile’s illustrations help bring the differences and friendship of the girls to life.  From the firecracker hair of Bink to the lean lines of Golllie.  The sleek nature of Gollie’s tree house to Bink’s small homey cottage.  Each detail is perfect to underline their differences and their connection to one another.

I look forward to seeing the next Bink & Gollie book.  I can’t wait to see where this friendship heads next.  Appropriate for ages 6-8.

Reviewed from library copy.

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