________________ CM . . . . Volume XI Number 9 . . . .January 7, 2005

cover

Jillian Jiggs.

Phoebe Gilman.
Markham, ON: Scholastic Canada, 1985/2004.
40 pp., pbk., $6.99.
ISBN 0-439-96185-8.

Subject Headings:
Play-Juvenile fiction.
Bedrooms-Cleaning-Juvenile fiction.

Preschool-grade 3 / Ages 4-8.

Review by Liz Greenaway.

**** /4

   

excerpt:

A long time ago, when she was quite small,
Jillian Jiggs wore nothing at all.

"Those were the days," her mother would sigh,
As she looked round the room and started to cry.
For Jillian Jiggs liked to dress up and play,
And this made a mess in her room every day.

"Jillian, Jillian, Jillian Jiggs!
It looks like your room has been lived in by pigs!"
"Later. I promise. As soon as I'm through,
I'll clean up my room. I promise. I do."

Now, Jillian meant every word that she said,
But later the promise flew out of her head.
When Rachel and Peter started to shout,
Jillian had to, just had to go out.

 

How many thousands of children and parents have been charmed by the wonderful Jillian Jiggs since she first appeared in 1985? Scholastic's re-issuing of these books guarantees that they will be enjoyed by thousands more.

     In the first book about Jillian, her mother is overwhelmed by the mess in Jillian's room. While Jillian means well, cleaning up is never as interesting as building robots out of boxes or playing witches or any of the other things Jillian and her friends find to do. Her mother, returning to check on her cleaning, faints dead away at the mess that greets her. "Start cleaning this minute, this second, not later!/ I want this room tidy. I want this room straighter!"

     While every parent can relate to the poor mother, the true magic of Phoebe Gilman's books, especially evident in the Jillian Jiggs series, is that Gilman is able to capture, in words and in her wonderful illustrations, the chaotic creativity and boundless energy of childhood and celebrate it. Even as Jillian finally sends her friends away until her room is neater, the mischievous glint is in her eye tells the reader that she is thinking up her next bit of fun.

     Jillian Jiggs -- the star of five books -- is a Canadian treasure. A must for every home and school library.

Highly Recommended.

Liz Greenaway has worked in bookselling and publishing and resides in Edmonton, AB.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

Copyright the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.
Published by
The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364
Hosted by the University of Manitoba.
 

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