No More Kisses for Bernard!

No More Kisses for Bernard! illus. by author. 28p. Frances Lincoln. 2012. Tr $17.99. ISBN 978-1-84780-105-0.
PreS-Gr 1—Six-year-old Bernard has a problem with his adoring aunts, Lula, Lola, Lilly, and Tallulah. Every time they visit, they cover him with kisses, driving him bonkers, and are effusive in expressing their love for him. His faithful dachshund mirrors his distress. Bernard repeatedly cries, "No more kisses!" and hides his lips away to show he means it. On his birthday, despite a visor pulled over his face, Aunt Tallulah manages to plant a kiss on his nose. Bernard wails and bursts into tears, and the aunts look too sad for words. A remorseful Tallulah suggests paper kisses, which she draws with her lipstick on pink, heart-shaped paper. Bernard loves them, and soon the other women are making them too. At bedtime, surrounded by his paper kisses, the boy willingly gives his Mama and Papa "a good night-sleep tight Bernard kiss." The bright cartoon illustrations capture four quirky aunts, two supportive parents, and a barefoot, beleaguered boy often in a Spider-Man costume. Hand-lettered phrases ("No more kisses!" among them) are nice additions. This funny tale of over-the-top affection will resonate with many young children. A good choice for storytime and family sharing.—Mary Jean Smith, formerly at Southside Elementary School, Lebanon, TN

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