Thursday, September 26, 2013

Loula is Leaving for Africa, by Anne Villeneuve

Loula Is Leaving for Africa
Author: Anne Villeneuve
Publisher: Kids Can Press
Publication Date: September 1, 2013
Source: NetGalley and Edelweiss
View on Amazon

Loula has had enough! Her triplet brothers are loud, stinky and driving her crazy! She's decided she's going to Africa. She doesn't know where that is, but she knows that it's very, very far away. So she packs her bags (her bunny, her tea service and her best drawing), tells her opera singer mother and her moustache-crafting father (is that a job?) that she's leaving. Then she's off. Luckily her chauffeur is actually paying attention and he spends the day with Loula, taking her on a "ship" (the town car) to "Africa" (the park), using their imaginations to have a day long adventure.

Magda ADORED this book. I'm sure we've already read it twenty times. When I asked her what her favourite part was she told me about ten different things. Here are the highlights:

Magda's favourite part: "I really like the name 'Loula.' But I liked how the driver called her 'mademoiselle' because that's like a fancy thing to say. And I like how they go to the park and have a picnic and stay out really late even after it starts to get dark. But why were Loula's brothers stinky? Were they really stinky? Did they just need a bath?"

My favourite part: Oh the eccentricities! The hipster haberdasher father, the opera diva mother, the little girl with her own chauffeur, the absurdity of the whole premise. I love it! It reminded me of those Eloise books about the little girl who lives at the Plaza Hotel. It's like stepping into a whole different world by reading about this little girl's life, which is sort of the point of the story anyway. So good!

I don't know much about author/illustrator Anne Villeneuve except that she wrote/drew a wordless book called The Red Scarf, but I hope she considers giving Loula her own series. I think my daughter would happily read 30 more books about this little girl!


In Lucia's Neighborhood
Rifka Takes a Bow
The Mole Sisters and the Blue Egg

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