CORK AND FUZZ:
VIKING * ILLUSTRATED BY LISA MC CUE * ISBN: 0-670-06145-X
|Flap copy: Cork is a short muskrat who likes to win
at games. Fuzz is a tall possum who also likes to win at games. Two best
friends. Both like to win. What happens when they play games against each
other? The warm, humorous story and expressive illustrations in this third
Cork and Fuzz easy-to-read title are sure to win over beginning
Behind the scenes: Writing the three Cork and Fuzz books has been an interesting experience. When I began writing the first book, I didn't know what the results would be. I had to learn about the characters, and learn how they'd respond in a given situation. They were fun to work with, but like any new acquaintances, we had to get to know each other before we really felt comfortable together.
By the second book, Short and Tall, not only was I more familiar with the characters, they were more familiar with me. Like eager children, they began to push and pull me in the directions they wanted to go, never mind what I thought.
And before I even began the third book, Good Sports, they were barging into my bedroom in the wee hours of the morning, jumping on my bed, and pestering me to give them something fun to do.
If there ever is a fourth Cork and Fuzz book, I'm going to let them write it.
School Library Journal: Cork
and Fuzz, two adorably illustrated characters, return in a story that
addresses an important topic. Competition strains the best-friendship of
Cork, a short muskrat, and Fuzz, a tall, athletic possum who has a
tendency to win easily and boast a lot. Even though clever Cork thinks of
several different games to play, he ends up losing all of them. Readers
who have come up against poor sports will empathize with him and grit
their teeth as competition turns to conflict. Fuzz repeatedly says,
"I won!" and Cork threatens to go home. When the buddies realize
that their friendship is at stake, they come up with a fun and clever
compromise. Filled with repeated vocabulary and simple sentences, the text
keeps the plot moving quickly. Lively illustrations depict the action as
well as the woodsy setting. Kudos to McCue for providing the characters
with a wide range of convincing expressions and activities while still
having them look just like a possum and a muskrat.