King Alice

Matthew Cordell, 1975-

Book - 2018

A young girl wakes her father by informing him that she is King Alice, then draws him and other family members into her imaginative activities, from writing a book to a sleepover with fairies.

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Children's Room Show me where

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Location Call Number   Status
Bookmobile Children's jE/Cordell Checked In
Children's Room jE/Cordell Due Jul 13, 2022
Children's Room jE/Cordell Checked In
Picture books
New York : Feiwel and Friends 2018.
First edition
Physical Description
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 29 cm
Main Author
Matthew Cordell, 1975- (author)
Review by Booklist Reviews

*Starred Review* Young Alice, with her boundless imagination and energy, appears to rule the roost in her interracial family of four. On a particularly snowy day, when the family is housebound, Alice comes up with a variety of activities to while away the hours, and creating a book about King Alice and her adventures is the one she decides to pursue. She and her indulgent dad write and illustrate several chapters about "King Alice the First! A-a-a-n-d . . . the royal brave knights!" which include a tea party, pirates, and unicorns. Caldecott medalist Cordell (Wolf in the Snow, 2017) offers up engaging illustrations in watercolor, colored pencil, markers, and pen-and-ink that are enjoyably reminiscent of both Tony Ross and Quentin Blake. Alice, who is full of creative ideas, uses her scepter as a backscratcher, while her patient father wears a tiara, a necklace, and red earrings. The day is segmented into specified periods: breakfast time, lunch time, dinner time, bath time, and bed time, with the addition of a 15-minute time-out after a frantic unicorn stampedes into Dad. Cordell's title pays delightful homage to books, writing, and illustrating, while revealing a happy, pajama-clad family spending a fun-filled, though frenetic, day together.  Preschool-Kindergarten. Copyright 2018 Booklist Reviews.

Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

Alice's father emerges foggily from his bedroom one morning to greet his daughter. (She, her mother, and baby sibling have brown skin, while the rumpled dad has white skin and Fred Flintstone–style stubble.) "Morning, Alice," he mumbles. "KING Alice! The First!" she corrects. It's a snow day, and after casting about for amusements, the two laboriously write and draw a book about King Alice, chapter by chapter, leaving it ("Okay, I'm bored now") and coming back to it ("IDEA!") throughout the day. Caldecott Award–winner Cordell (Wolf in the Snow) mimics child-style print and crayon drawings for a tale that features knights, pirates, and unicorns. Alice's story—and her story's story—get their laughs from close observation. Cordell knows how children speak ("I'm so, so, so, so, so sorry I bonked you with my unicorn, Daddy"), what they like to do ("Let's make... super-sparkly strawberry muffins again!"), and how their stories sound ("King Alice yelled, ‘This is some delicious tea!'?"). Readers will treasure their time with Alice's father, who allows his daughter to be exactly who she is, and King Alice, who leads her family on adventures even when they don't leave the house. Ages 3–5. (Sept.) Copyright 2018 Publishers Weekly.

Review by School Library Journal Reviews

PreS-Gr 2—King Alice (as she insists on being called) is considerably more excited about being stuck inside on a snow day than her father is. Nonetheless, he gamely goes along with her demands for his constant attention while Mom tends to the baby and everyone's nutritional needs. The king and Sir Dad compose and illustrate an extensive chronicle of their pursuits from tea parties to pirate battles to unicorn stampedes. The best fun here is in Cordell's cartooned illustrations of the biracial family who never get out of their pajamas until bath time. King Alice crayons the visuals of her story on lined paper while Sir Dad transcribes her text. In the framing story, readers see their real world setting complete with burping baby, ginger cat, and a floor strewn with toys. From the first spread of the unshaven father, yawning and scratching his butt while his daughter informs him that she's to be addressed as "King Alice the First," kids will know that they are in for a wild ride through a little girl's fecund imagination. That Sir Dad is such a willing accomplice (but not a complete pushover) makes this cozy story a delight to share in multiple readings. VERDICT This delightful book-within-a-book will inspire domestic mayhem while enduring a snow day. A must-have.—Miriam Lang Budin, formerly at Chappaqua Library, NY Copyright 2018 School Library Journal.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

Stuck indoors on a snowy day, Alice decides to write a story and casts herself in the role of a king before teaming up with her father for an imaginative adventure that lasts all the way until bedtime.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

A young girl wakes her father by informing him that she is Queen Alice, then draws him and other family members into her imaginative activities, from writing a book to a sleepover with fairies.

Review by Publisher Summary 3

Matthew Cordell, Caldecott Medal-winning author and illustrator of Wolf in the Snow, delivers yet another warm and delightful picture book in King Alice. Alice and her family are stuck indoors on a snowy day. Alice loves to read, and when her dad suggests that she make her own book, she snaps out of her "I'm bored" mode and makes up a story that lasts till the lights go out later that night. Here is a book that celebrates books, reading, and an imaginative way that one family handles being housebound.Praise for Matthew Cordell“Beautifully paced . . . ultimately reassuring.” —Wall Street Journal on Wolf in the Snow“Shows the power of kindness and bravery. Reminiscent of William Steig's Brave Irene, Cordell's book is a perfect choice for the dark days of winter.” —IndieBound on Wolf in the Snow