Willems, Mo (2006). Edwina The Dinosaur Who Didn’t Know She Was Extinct. New York: Hyperion Books for Children.
Edwina is a dinosaur that is well loved in her town. She helps her neighbors, bakes excellent cookies for everyone, and is generally a great friend. A problem arises when a boy named Reginald Von Hoobie-Doobie takes it upon himself to present a project titled “Things That Are Extinct.” He informs the class that dinosaurs are, in fact, extinct because he doesn’t like Edwina. His classmates cannot believe it and refuse to listen as does the rest of the town when Reginald goes out to convince others that dinosaurs are, in fact, extinct. Exasperated, he wishes he could find someone who will listen to him, and Edwina offers to do so. Reginald presents all his facts about the extinction of the dinosaurs. While Edwina cannot argue his points, she simply doesn’t care. By that point, Reginald decides he doesn’t care either, and Edwina bakes him cookies.
This book offers an interesting juxtaposition between full color and black and white illustrations on opposite pages, offering a unique visual treat to keep viewers interested. The illustrations are simple and kid-like to show the simplicity and innocence of Edwina’s carefree, friendly, and accepting stance throughout the book. The story teaches a valuable lesson about being a bully and reacting to those who don’t like you personally, but it does so in an endearing and simplistic way that keeps the reader laughing.
From Booklist: “Set against plain, light-blue backdrops, the pictures, in Willem’s familiar cartoon style, show Reginald up to his dastardly deeds as well as characters in the classroom, on the playground, and in the park. Children will have fun searching the art for hidden pictures of Pigeon and Knuffle Bunny.”
Gather other Mo Willems books:
–Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus ISBN 078681988X
–Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Tale ISBN 0786818700
–Horray for Amanda and Her Alligator ISBN 006200400X
–That Is Not a Good Idea ISBN 0062203096
–Leonardo the Terrible Monster ISBN 0786852941