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LIZARDS DON'T WEAR LIP GLOSS (Abby and Tess Pet-Sitters series)

Author: Trina Wiebe

Illustrator: Meredith Johnson

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Publisher: Lobster Press, ´┐½2009

Material: paperback

Summary: Having survived her first test, Abby is ready to get her pet-sitting business off the ground. Her first client: Angus, a green anole (like an iguana). Abby was a little leary, but she had her notes and her partner: Tess, her little sister. Even though Tess was driving her crazy, Abby needed her little sister's help. Or did she? While Abby was getting the crickets, Tess was watching Angus. So how did he escape? This is a lightly illustrated series about two sisters for transitional readers.

Type of Reading: bedtime story, family reading, anytime reading, independent reading, read aloud book

Recommended Age: read together: 6 to 9; read yourself: 8 to 12

Interest Level: 7 to 10

Reading Level: 3.9

Age of Child: Read with a 7-year-old girl.

Young Reader Reaction: At the end of Goldfish Don't Take Bubble Baths, our daughter was anxious to start reading this second book. We got about halfway through, though, and she started to lose interest. We did finish reading it, but it had to be our pick.

Adult Reader Reaction: We like these stories. Tess and Abby's relationship is what you'd expect of two sisters: sometimes they are great partners and sometimes they annoy each other. The pet-sitting business adds a layer to their relationship that really emphasizes how partnerships and communication work. Angus is a unique animal, so we learned something, too. We were disappointed that our daughter lost interest.

Pros: This wholesome story offers themes that girls (particularly sisters) and animal lovers will enjoy.

Cons: None, really.

Borrow or Buy: Borrow. This is an enjoyable story, filled with plenty of events and short chapters to keep even reluctant readers engaged.


Educational Themes: There are several layers to this book, which would be an excellent choice for an elementary book club. The themes that stand out are sibling dynamics, responsibility, the ups/downs of owning your own business (can't pick your clients, working with others, etc.), and honesty.

Notes: Publisher advises AR reading level 3.9

Literary Categories: Fiction - mystery, adventure, family, easy reader series

Date(s) Reviewed: June 2009

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