Reviews for Rosie Sprout's Time to Shine
Booklist Reviews 2012 January #1
Rosie is jealous of her classmate Violet, who stars in gym class, choir practice, at the lunch table, and everywhere else. Body language tells part of the story in this picture book, and the spacious, digitally touched pencil sketches show Rosie seething on the sidelines while Violet hogs the limelight. When the class project is to grow pea plants in little pots on the windowsill at the back of the room, everyone is excited. Violet, of course, knows her plant will be the tallest and her pot the sparkliest. Then fuming Rosie secretly pushes soil on top of Violet's plant. But when Violet is at home sick for several days, Rosie not only undoes the damage but she also cares for Violet's plant, and the teacher calls Rosie "the best." Kids will absorb the botany facts that are informally woven into the story, while the outsider kid's recognition and self-acceptance makes for great drama. Copyright 2012 Booklist Reviews.
Horn Book Guide Reviews 2012 Spring
Rosie is so fed up with a constantly one-upping classmate that she does something unconscionable to the girl's plant-growing project--and then finds a way to make things right. There's not a misstep in sight, from Wortche's sure plotting to her subtle ending. Barton is uncanny at capturing the body language that says so much about children's moods and attitudes.
Kirkus Reviews 2011 November #2
Rosie is pretty secure in her own skin, but, just once, she wants to be better than her classmate Violet at something. Violet runs fastest, sings highest, tells the loudest stories and looks fanciest. When Rosie tires of Violet's perfection, her jealousy gets the best of her. Competition tightens when both girls' pea plants sprout at the same time, but Violet loudly claims the sprouting crown. Rose can't take it anymore and heaps soil on Violet's sprout, claiming her pea plant to be the best. Her happiness doesn't last long. When her conscience nags at her and Violet comes down with a case of chicken pox, Rosie does what she needs to do to both salve her conscience and keep Violet's plant alive. Readers will wonder why "everyone" allows Violet her reign of perfection--the sunny, digitally created watercolor illustrations show a self-congratulatory little braggart who never thinks about others. Rosie, who is a perfectly wonderful little girl, does learn to be kinder (or at least not to sabotage a classmate's project), but the ending doesn't satisfy, and the lesson feels muddled. Rosie works hard to grow two great plants, but Violet can barely acknowledge the effort. Only Rosie and the strangely disengaged teacher, Ms. Willis, seem to know how much work Rosie did. A confusing, if visually attractive offering. (Picture book. 5-8) Copyright Kirkus 2011 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.
Publishers Weekly Reviews 2011 October #4
Rosie's classmate Violet has what is charitably known as a strong personality. "She was the loudest storyteller at lunchtime. And she looked the fanciest on picture day," writes Wortche, in an accomplished debut. "Violet was definitely the best. And everyone agreed. Except Rosie." Matters come to a head when everyone in class has to grow a pea plant; Rosie approaches the assignment with geeky devotion, while Violet sees it as one more opportunity to hog the spotlight. In the pages that follow, Rosie discovers just how much Violet has gotten under her skin, but she also learns that she's on the radar of someone who really matters. In lesser hands, this could be just another life lesson, but Wortche possesses both a refreshing directness and a willingness to trust her readers. She also has the courage to conclude not with reconciliation, but with a bittersweet and profoundly wise acknowledgment that it takes all kinds. This impressive new author is well served by Barton (Mine!), whose digital classroom sketches convey a tumult of emotion and have just the right amounts of energy and vulnerability. Ages 5-9. (Dec.) [Page ]. Copyright 2011 PWxyz LLC
School Library Journal Reviews 2012 January
K-Gr 2--Rosie isn't the fastest runner, or the best singer, or the fanciest dressed for picture day. Those superlatives, and more, belong to Violet. Everyone in the class supports her bigger--and better--personality. Everyone except Rosie. When the two girls' pea plants are the first to sprout, Violet barges ahead and declares hers the best. Jealous, Rosie covers Violet's sprout with dirt. When Violet comes down with chicken pox, Rosie, feeling guilty, cares for her sprout as well as her own. Both plants flourish--and Rosie proves that she is definitely the best gardener. When Violet returns, she is taken aback to find herself on equal ground with Rosie and thanks her before focusing on areas where she is the best. Many children will relate to Rosie's feelings of jealousy and desire to be the best at something. The story would also be useful for the Violets of the world, who may not realize how their bragging affects others. With sweet, soft illustrations full of details that complement the text, Rosie and her diverse class of pink-cheeked friends are full of appeal. A solid addition.--Anna Haase Krueger, Antigo Public Library, WI [Page 89]. (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.