Book Review: The Cranky Ballerina by Elise Gravel

The Cranky Ballerina is a picturebook written and illustrated by Elise Gravel. Ada hates everything about ballet class, yet she still has to go! Then one Saturday, Ada pliĆ©s right out the door and into the hallway, smacking into someone who thinks her ungraceful moves are great! Her mistake might just lead to a wonderful new adventure for Ada.

The Cranky Ballerina is another winner from Gravel. The illustrations are wonderful, and the thought bubbles keep the flow and energy of the book at a constant level. Ada is an energetic and plucky young girl who wants to go her own way. she does not like ballet, and does not feel like she is good at it despite the rehearsals she is dragged to. I like that Ada dislikes ballet, not because of what it is, but because she just does not feel like it is right for her. She pits in an honest effort, and it just does not click with her. when she stumbles into the perfect solution I was delighted on several levels. I like that her new activity is not necessarily a 'girl' activity, but something that she takes to right away with no thought to gender roles. i have to admit that I see a bt of myself, and my daughter, in Ada's stubbornness and love for something other than what is the suggested activity for her.

The Cranky Ballerina offers readers a book in which the author clearly understands how her youngest readers feel, and offers them understanding and support through fun books that just might help their adults understand them a little bit better as well, and remember how they felt when they were younger themselves.
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