As I'm trying to balance my easy reader section between classic easy reader fiction, easy reader nonfiction, and some of the new and fun genres that are now being produced, I suddenly realized that I'd forgotten I also needed to balance reading level. Argh! There's always something else to think of. I think my collection skews a little too heavily on the upper levels, so I'm looking at some very beginning easy readers. Sarah Week's very funny Pip Squeak stories are just perfect for this age range.
In Drip, Drop, Pip Squeak the mouse is trying to sleep when a leak appears in his ceiling. Every time he puts out a receptacle to stop the leak, another one appears! Finally, he finds the solution. The story is silly but delightful with a simple rhyme scheme kids will be able to hold onto as they work through their first sentences. The illustrations complement the text, but don't supply so much information that readers will be able to neglect the text and get the story from the pictures.
In Pip Squeak's next adventure, titled after himself, Sarah Weeks' rhymes feel almost Seussish as Pip vigorously cleans his house, then watches in despair as his friend Max trashes it. Max offers to help clean up - and tries his best, but Pip squeak has a better solution.
The rhymes in this second volume feel faster and more bouncy, fitting perfectly the frenetic pace of the simple plot. The illustrations are a little more silly, often seen from a tilted perspective, especially when we meet Max.
Verdict: Recommended if you are looking to fill in your younger reading levels in easy readers. An excellent pair of books to pair with Dr. Seuss.
ISBN: 978-0064435970; January 2002 by HarperCollins; Borrowed from the library.
ISBN: 978-0060756383; May 2008 by HarperCollins; Borrowed from the library.