Booklist Reviews : Booklist Reviews 2006 February #2 /*Starred Review*/ PreS-Gr. 1. One day Suzy Goose looks around and realizes she's just one of the gaggle. Oh, to be special! She begins wondering about what it would be like if she was a different animal. If she was a bat, she could flap her wings; if she was a penguin, she could slide; if she was a kangaroo, she could jump; and if she was a lion, she could roar. In fact, she lets out quite a loud "Rroarrhonk!" A real-life lion ignores her, until she gets right in his face. Then he rouses from his sleep and begins a chase. Now Suzy Goose learns something about herself: she can flap her wings, slide, and jump--which she does all the way back to her friends. The lion is right behind her, but faced with a bunch of protective geese, he turns tail and runs. This book is clever, clever, clever. Horacek uses words and pictures to tie every piece of the story together, beginning with the two-page spread filled with identical gray geese with bright orange beaks. But when Suzy starts imagining herself as different animals, her world bursts into extravagant color, becoming a place populated with animals that have the exuberance of the real thing. Created in mixed media, the art jumps off the pages, a fitting verb for a clever, clever book, alive in every way. ((Reviewed February 15, 2006)) Copyright 2006 Booklist Reviews.
Publishers Weekly Reviews : PW Reviews 2006 February #2
Birds of a feather may flock together, but Suzy Goose is sick and tired of it: "I wish I could be different, she thought." Her species envy leads her to a series of improbable, comical encounters with animals big and small: she hangs upside-down with a velvety brown bat, gets a piggyback ride from an ostrich and swims with a seal. Horcek, working in mixed-media and cut-paper collage, sticks to cleanly outlined, relatively simple shapes, but his energized textures bring to mind Eric Carle's work: the ostrich's feathers fan out in a flurry of white and black brushstrokes that evoke an almost palpable downiness, while the seal's mostly submerged body seems to melt into a murky green sea. Suzy finally pushes her luck too far when she tries to rouse a magnificent orange lion with an aspirational "Rroarrhonk !" (Horcek amusingly zooms in on the lion's perturbed face), but she manages to make it back to her gaggle with her spunk intact. The text may be bare-bones ("If I was an ostrich, I could run really fast"), but the poster-like impact of the pictures, combined with Suzy's featherbrained adventure scheme, should strike a chord with young audiences. Ages 2-5. (Mar.)
[Page 87]. Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal Reviews : SLJ Reviews 2006 April
PreS-Gr 1 -Suzy Goose looks around and wishes she could be different. The first spread justifies her problem as it is impossible to identify her in the sea of duplicate geese. In those that follow, she visits other animals and samples ways to be different. "If I was a giraffe, I could STRETCH up high." "If I was an ostrich, I could RUN really fast." Pages of "If I was" instead of "If I were" will drive grammar purists crazy, but the scratchy mixed-media illustrations of Suzy trying out each animal's persona and environment make the spreads tactile and pleasurable. When she encounters a lion, she tries a roar ("Rroarrhonk!"), which enrages him. Using some of the moves picked up along the way, the goose hurries back to the safety of the other geese. The close call convinces her that a group has its advantages, but she continues to stand out with her "Rroarrhonk!" Animal movements and sounds, along with the large, bright pictures and interesting compositions, make this an attractive choice to share with young audiences.-Julie Roach, Cambridge Public Library, MA
[Page 108]. Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.