Baabwaa and Wooliam

illus. by Melissa Sweet. 40p. Candlewick. Sept. 2017. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780763660741.POP
PreS-Gr 2—Wooliam, a sheep who reads, and Baabwaa, a sheep who knits, live a quiet life together in their home in a walled-in field. One day, they decide that they need a little adventure in their lives and they set out to see what they can find. After they walk around their contained environment, a strange-looking sheep with dirty, sharp teeth and a filthy coat approaches them. This sheep is not very friendly and chases Wooliam and Baabwaa. It turns out that he is not a sheep after all but rather a wolf in sheep's clothing, which Wooliam has read about in his books. When the wolf hears Wooliam and Baabwaa discussing this, he becomes contemplative. The chase stops, and the sheep realize that the wolf would like to learn to read. An unlikely friendship begins—one that is not free from an occasional romp around the field. With illustrations created in watercolor, gouache, and mixed media, this picture book is sure to hold the attention of early elementary children. Set in a luscious green field under a blue sky with singing birds, this upbeat story features sweet and relatable sheep and a wolf who is not evil but just rather rambunctious.
VERDICT A fun modern take on the big bad wolf. The colorful visuals warmly convey the drama and excitement of the enjoyable text.

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