Sprout Street Neighbors: Five Stories

illus. by Anna Alter. 112p. (Sprout Street Neighbors). Knopf. Apr. 2015. Tr $12.99. ISBN 9780385755580; lib. ed. $15.99. ISBN 9780385755597; ebk. $9.99. ISBN 9780385755610.
Gr 2–4—This intermediate chapter book showcases five very different neighbors—Henry (a mouse), Emma (a squirrel), Wilbur (a cat), Violet (a chicken), and Fernando (a rabbit)—all living in an apartment building. They help one another in simple ways, such as celebrating a special birthday, as well as with more complicated problems, such as moving a garden about to be demolished or repairing a drippy roof. The chapters are liberally sprinkled with adorable illustrations, and each story begins with a picture of the resident's apartment door, allowing readers to speculate about his or her habits and hobbies. Hand this title to fans of Cynthia Rylant or Patricia MacLachlan or to any reader who prefers a quieter book.—Melisa Bailey, Harford County Library System, MD
Five animal friends live in the same apartment building. Whenever one has a problem, the others come to his or her rescue. For instance, when Fernando decides to follow his dream of becoming a dancer, Violet gives him encouragement; when Violet's roof leaks, Wilbur calls the plumber. The stories are sweet and gentle, and the frequent pencil illustrations help differentiate the characters.

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