Silly Lilly, a precocious young girl, explores the world around her with her trusty teddy bear in these fun graphic novels for beginning readers. In the first volume, Silly Lilly and the Four Seasons, Lilly participates in various activities associated with each season. In the spring, she goes to the park, and in the summer, the beach. Fall brings apple-picking and winter brings snow, until it’s back to spring again. In the second volume, Silly Lilly in What Will I Be Today?, Lilly tries out a new identity for each day of the week. She experiments with everything from cook to city planner to vampire. With no characters besides Lilly, this is truly a child’s perspective of the world, full of playfulness and wonder. And even though it features a female main character, her experiences should resonate with readers of all genders.
Silly Lilly is the English incarnation of the beloved French character Mimi Cracra, created by Agnès Rosenstiehl. The comics, originally serialized in a French newspaper starting in 1975, were eventually collected in bound volumes and developed into a television series. Rosenstiehl created these new stories based on Mimi Cracra especially for the TOON Books collection.
The simple art style is reminiscent of vintage comics like Little Orphan Annie and Little Jinx, but still feels fresh and modern. The bright, primary colors will appeal to the target audience. Most pages consist of two side-by-side panels that are easy to follow from left to right, introducing first-time comic readers to the format. The books themselves are presented beautifully, with thick, matte pages and sturdy, hardcover binding.
The books use basic words appropriate for early readers that would work as a read-aloud or as an independent book for those just starting to read. Other learning concepts like colors, days of the week, seasons, counting, and opposites are incorporated into the story without being explicit about it. Parents and educators can even use the lesson plans provided by the publisher for additional guided learning. An iOS app for reading the first book is also available for purchase. The Silly Lilly books would be a welcome addition to any collection that serves young readers.
Silly Lilly and the Four Seasons
by Agnès Rosenstiehl
TOON Books, 2008
Silly Lilly in What Will I Be Today?
by Agnès Rosenstiehl
TOON Books, 2010