Reviews provided by Syndetics
Publishers Weekly Review
Debut talent Wall relays a friendship story with satisfying simplicity. Drawn in charcoal and finished digitally, the stripped-down art features breezily outlined cartoon figures that pop against bold backdrops. At home, a girl named Sophie plays with her dolls and dresses up in a boa and heels, "but this isn't much fun by herself." She also wishes she had a friend to play with at the park, where she plops down on the slide and sits on a swing. After a yellow oval appears at the edge of a blank page ("But wait. What's that?"), a page turn reveals that it's the bill of a goose, who befriends and plays with Sophie. Wall skillfully captures the emotions of Sophie and Goose-who remains silent save for one jubilant honk-through subtle facial cues. Though Sophie's mother (seen only from the waist down) initially refuses her daughter's request to bring Goose home, she reconsiders-for reasons unknown-providing a tidy happy ending and paving the way for future adventures (several sequels are already available in the U.K., where the book was first published). Ages 4-8. (Feb.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
School Library Journal Review
PreS-Gr 1-In this sweet UK import, little Sophie has no one to play with and feels lonely. When her mom takes her to the park, instead of befriending a boy who's playing on the seesaw, Sophie meets a more unexpected companion, a goose. They become fast friends and spend the day having fun at the playground. Unfortunately, when it's time to head home, Sophie's mom does not let the goose join them. The next day they meet at the park again, but Goose notices that other geese are flying away for the winter, and the two sadly hug good-bye. The day after, a downcast Sophie is alone at the park until she hears a familiar "Honk!" and reunites with her friend. Sophie's mom relents and agrees to take Goose home with them. Wall's digitally finished illustrations, drawn in thick black outlines with colorful solid fills and backgrounds, are somewhat reminiscent of Lucy Cousins's style but hold their own. Their minimalist style perfectly complements the concise text, printed in large bold font. This is a short and quirky tale with an appealing message that friends come in many different shapes and sizes, even somewhat unusual ones.-Yelena Alekseyeva-Popova, formerly at Chappaqua Library, NY (c) Copyright 2014. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Horn Book Review
Lonely little Sophie is used to playing dolls and dress-up by herself until she meets a goose at the park whom she plays with and wants to bring home. "But Mom says no." The story isn't very well developed (wait: now Mom says yes?), but Wall's digitally finished charcoal illustrations are notable for their clean lines, saturated colors, and frolicsome energy. (c) Copyright 2015. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Kirkus Book Review
Young Sophie is portrayed with yellow hair and a red dress and smiles out at readers as the story begins. Soon she makes the acquaintance of a most amiable goose. Sophie is like many girls. She enjoys her dolls and dressing up. But sometimes she is lonely playing by herself. Even when her mother takes her to the park, she opts for the slide and swings instead of the seesaw. "Sophie wishes she had a friend to play with." On the facing page is an ovular bit of golden yellow on the right that catches the narrator's attention: "But wait. What's that?" The page turn reveals Sophie's surprised excitement at meeting Goose. They play all day. "When it is time to go home, Goose wants to come, too." Unfortunately, Mom, always pictured from the hip down, disagrees. But Goose is at the park the next day. They play until Goose sees some of his fellow geese heading south. Saddened, Goose and Sophie give each other a fierce goodbye hug. Thankfully, their parting is short-livedand this time, Mom says he can come home. Wall's spare text allows her thick-lined, childlike illustrations to fully convey the tale's emotional arc. The white and yellow used for both Sophie and Goose glow brilliantly against the vibrant hues chosen for the background. Simple, elegant design produces a title with high appeal for the preschool set. (Picture book. 3-5) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.