Monday, November 17, 2014

SPAGHETTI SMILES by Margo Sorenson

SPAGHETTI SMILES by Margo Sorenson; illustrated by David Harrington (Pelican Publishing Company, 2014)

Hi folks! We're not doing a marvelous middle grade Monday today because, quite frankly, we're feeling swamped at Mafioso HQ what with selecting and packaging books as holiday presents for the Don's friends and acquaintances. But I did take a break--with the Don's blessing, after he caught sight of the title--to enjoy this picture book by Margo Sorenson, who is a great friend of this blog.

This is a fun, fun book. It tells the story of Jake, who likes to visit his Uncle Rocco's restaurant to read his favorite books to the chef. But trouble is brewing, as Uncle Rocco may lose his lease if a good neighbor can't be found to share the building.
Jake sets off on a mission, visiting the bank, the post office, and the gas station, to see if they would be interested in relocating. No such luck because, although everyone loves Uncle Rocco's food, they don't want to find "rows of pizzas baking in the bank vault," or "lasagna airmailed all over the world," or--horrors!--"gas pumps pumping tomato sauce instead of gas."

Downcast, Jake wanders into a bookstore, where he convinces the store owner. After all, "everyone would buy your books and then eat next door... Or they could eat at Rocco's first, and then buy a book from you for dessert." Now, everyone's happy. Even the pizzas are smiling!

I loved Margo Sorenson's wacky sense of humor, and the illustrations by David Harrington are delightfully energetic and eye-catching. I can see myself reading this to the Don's grandkids until the cover falls apart!

Margo Sorenson is a writer with an incredible range and mastery of a variety of subject matter. Here's a link to an interview I did with her for her middle grade novel Tori and the Sleigh of Midnight Blue. And here's more information about her:

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Author of twenty-eight books, Margo Sorenson was born in Washington, DC, and spent the first seven years of her life in Spain and Italy. After teaching high school and middle school and raising a family of two daughters, Margo is now a full-time writer. A National Milken Educator Award recipient, Margo always has a good time meeting with her readers in school and library settings from Minnesota to California and Hawaii.

Margo and her husband now live full-time in California. When she isn't writing, she enjoys visiting her grandchildren, playing golf, reading, watching sports, traveling, and hearing from her readers. You can visit her website here, or follow her on Twitter @ipapaverison. 

Thanks for reading, everyone, and have a Positively Perfect Picture Book Monday! Ciao!!


  1. Michael, grazie mille for such a lovely review; I am so glad you enjoyed Jake's and Uncle Rocco's story and illustrations! Natalie, thank you for stopping by to visit!

  2. I like that you're mixing it up and serving us a picture book on Monday. Sounds scrumptious. And whaddaya know: the Don and I have something in common. We both like spaghetti.

  3. This one really looks fun. I will definitely check it out. Thanks for the review.

  4. Ciao, Joanne and Rosi -- grazie for visting Michael's fun blog! He does have a way with words, doesn't he? Happy writing and reading!


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