Bink & Gollie by Kate DiCamillo and Alison McGhee

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Since it’s Halloween, I’m writing about a book that can truly be considered a “treat.”  Like most children’s librarians, I consider anything written by Kate DiCamillo to be an automatic purchase and so when I heard about this new easy reader book, I ordered it sight unseen.  I knew by the cover that I was going to love it.  As I expected, it’s so wonderful that I wish I could put it in every child’s (under 10) trick-or-treat bag tonight.  Bink and Gollie are friends, but like Rat and Mole (The Wind in the Willows) or Toot and Puddle, they are opposites.  Gollie is tall and logical.  Bink is small and whimsical.  The illustrations by Tony Fucile capture their personalities with energy and humor.

This exchange between the two friends captures their differing styles:

It’s a sock bonanza!” said Bink.

“Indeed it is,” said Gollie. “An extremely bright sock bonanza.”

“I’ll take this pair,” said Bink.

“Bink,” said Gollie, “the brightness of those socks pains me. I beg you not to purchase them.”

“I can’t wait to put them on,” said Bink.

“I love socks,” said Bink.

“Some socks are more lovable than others,” said Gollie.

The Peanuts gang came also to mind when reading this book.  In three connected stories, there are no adults present.  At first I looked for one of the girl’s parents, but then I loved the fact that I had to suspend my own logical/Gollie tendencies and just go along for the ride.  As Gollie says, some socks are more lovable than others, and the same is true for books. Bink & Gollie is more lovable than many of them.