Review: Gwendolyn’s Nose by Irene Marynowicz
By Irene Marynowicz
Reading level: Ages 4-8
Kindle edition: 1276 KB
Publisher: Amazon Digital Services
Gwendolyn’s Nose exhales a windstorm of outrageous rhymes, a sense of possibility, and fun. Clever wordsmith Irene Marynowicz raps about a little girl who has a very big problem with her proboscis. Gwendolyn remembers a time when she didn’t have such a long schnoz, but now it’s hindering her from everyday pursuits. With the help of her friends, Bart, Miss Mouse, and Fast Len, and some fantastical lovable creatures like the “elefazats, groos, and kalamakoos” (depicted with great imagination by Mike Motz), Gwen searches for a way to shrink her enormous nose.
The joy of this book jives away with its delightful wordplay and unexpected rhymes. A favorite phrase like “the glummer Gwen glummed” demonstrates how to play with language through the use of unusual made-up words. Motz’s illustrations of Gwendolyn’s nose are somewhat reminiscent of Ganesha, the Remover of Obstacles. He captures her despair with puddles of tears spilling down her trunk-like nose. Thanks to wise Mr. Owl, Gwen discovers a thunderous sneeze that will return her nose back to its normal size.
When her buddies see Gwen suffering, they offer gentle words of encouragement. Showing compassion and kindness to another teaches children empathy for their fellow peers. It’s a fine lesson on how to cheer up a pal and work together to find a solution to our problems. Ultimately, Gwendolyn’s nose helps her to make new friends and count her blessings instead of the length of her nose.
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