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Last Noo Noo


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Marlon, a crocodile, doesn't need a noo-noo, a pacifier, all the time: ``Only at night or if he's a little tired.'' Unfortunately, his grandmother insists he's too old to have a noo-noo at all. This tale may not be as memorable as Murphy's Five Minutes' Peace and subsequent tales about the Large elephant clan, but it ably showcases her droll wit. For example, after Marion's mother throws away all the noo-noo's, Marion hides one in a boot; the accompanying image shows Marion shaking out the hidden object from the footwear as if it were the last M&M in a box. Parents and kids will also nod in recognition at the dialogue ("He looks ridiculous with that stupid big thing stuck in his mouth all the time"). The expressive crayon illustrations humorously portray Marion's insistence on his pacifier despite objections by his parents and grandparents, as well as teasing by his peers. In all, an appropriately lighthearted look at a situation that will hit close to home for many toddlers. Ages 4-up. (Oct.)

PreS-K‘Marlon's grandmother insists that he is much too old to use a pacifier. Eventually, his mother agrees, and confiscates his ``noo-noos.'' Marlon, however, has stashed extras throughout the house. Even the teasing of others doesn't deter him. Only after he plants a spare pacifier to grow a noo-noo tree does he decide to throw his last one away. A final two-page spread shows the tree in bloom while a contented Marlon strolls away with his harvest. Murphy's monster characters resemble dinosaurs, and they are not particularly unusual or appealing. The text refers to Marlon as a preschooler, but his size, body movements, and language development give him the appearance of an older child. Libraries with a demand for titles on this specialized topic might consider purchasing a copy. Others can skip it.‘Kathy Piehl, Mankato State University, MN

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