Tulip Loves Rex

illus. by Sarah Massini. 32p. HarperCollins/Katherine Tegen. Jan. 2014. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780062094131.
PreS—Tulip loves to dance. Her parents are proud of their daughter, who is not like other girls. Instead of saying "Mama," "Dada," or "goo," the first words Tulip uttered were "whirl," "twirl," and "leap." One day in the city park, Tulip encounters a big, hairy dog with a tag on his collar that states, "My name is REX. I am not quite like other dogs." Tulip discovers Rex doesn't like to fetch or catch, so she tries to help him: "We all have something we love to do. We just have to discover what it is." When Rex begins to spin with Tulip, the reverse side of his tag reveals his adoptability and the child knows she has found her soul mate. The illustrations, done in mixed traditional media and Photoshop, reveal a small blond child who is happy, carefree, and constantly in motion. Though the text verges on the saccharine ("'It seems wishes come in all shapes and sizes,' said Tulip, 'quite like love'"), young girls who love to dance will enjoy reading and seeing how Tulip's talents lead her to a kindred spirit.—Maryann H. Owen, Children's Literature Specialist, Mt. Pleasant, WI
Since she was very young, Tulip has loved to dance, twirl, spin, and leap, and her parents "didn't mind a bit." When Tulip meets a friendly dog in the park, she helps him discover his special talent, which is much like hers: spinning and leaping. Swirling lines in this spirited book's mixed-media and Photoshop illustrations add movement and energy to Tulip's graceful moves.

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