Reviewed by Erik A.K.A. This Kid Reviews Books. Please check out my blog by clicking HERE! Thank you Ms. Morris for allowing me to be a guest reviewer!
The Dancing Pancake
By Eileen Spinelli
Illustrated by Joanne Lew-Vriethoff
256 pages – ages 8+
Published by Knopf Books for Young Readers on May 11, 2010
Bindi was sad, angry and confused that her parents separated and her Dad moved to a city to find a job. Bindi’s mom, aunt and uncle buy a building, make an apartment on top for Bindi and her mom and a restaurant in the bottom. They called the restaurant “The Dancing Pancake.” At first, they didn’t get a whole lot of customers but they eventually get more and more. Bindi gets to know and love some of the regular customers, but she also really disliked others. Although Bindi is hurt and confused about her father leaving, she loves working at the restaurant and the customers at The Dancing Pancake become like a big family to her.
I really enjoyed this story (I love the title)! I liked how Mrs. Spinelli added a lot of humor to the story, even though it deals with some hard topics (changing your life, a parent leaving). What I thought was totally cool is that the whole book is told in verse (OK I had to look up the name of poems that do not rhyme – VERSE). The verse poetry and the sketches (the sketches are pretty cool) throughout the book made it seem like a journal or diary full of entries and it seemed like I got to know about Bindi through her journal. The format of the book added to the story. Bindi was a great main character. She seemed like she’d be a nice kid in my class. The customers that came into the restaurant were of all types and it was fun to learn about them. One very funny thing I saw in the book was in one part, a character is reading the book “Stargirl” which is one of Jerry Spinelli’s books (Mrs. Spinelli’s husband – hee hee – very funny)! I recommend this awesome story to kids 8+!
Eileen Spinelli is the award-winning author of loads of AWESOME children’s books. To learn more about Mrs. Spinelli and her books, please visit her website HERE!
Eric — Thank you for guest reviewing The Dancing Pancake. I have always enjoyed your reviews and your website. You write with the expertise of someone much older than your tender years. Thank you Eric for keeping this site active while I could not. Your selflessness is admirable. –Sue