It’s one thing to feel like an alien on your first day of school. It’s another thing to be one.Click-Clack Waddle-Waddle Dot-Dot Dewey Dew is a shy blue creature whose one enormous eye sheds a few quiet dorfs as his mother flies their spaceship toward Earth. Dewey feels out of place at Ms. Brightsun’s School for Little Learners. Earth words feel strange and “hard in his mouth.” The
clothes don’t exactly fit well (“Earth socks drooped around his hunklets!”). And though the kids are different colors, Dewey is the only blue student there.
In the end, a single act of kindness turns his day around. Taking the “new kids at school” experience to an absurd extreme, the amusing text works seamlessly with the artwork, letting the pictures show the meanings of words and phrasesnthat might otherwise be puzzling. The illustrations, created with pencil, watercolor, and digital media, are expressive and engaging.
A fine read-aloud choice, this picture book explores what it
feels like to be the new kid, whatever planet you call home. — Carolyn Phelan, Booklist
Dewey Dew's first day of school might look an awful lot like most kids', though it's a pretty safe bet they aren't extraterrestrials. Dewey Dew is blue, has one eye and an antennalike appendage on his head, and is from Planet Eight Hundred Seventy-Two Point Nine. But for his first day of school, he is heading, reluctantly, for Earth and Mrs. Brightsun's School for Little Learners. But nothing there looks, feels, or sounds quite right to Dewey Dew: his new "Earth shoes pinched his oofs," and he dorfles just a little, though "he was pretty sure he was much too old for it."
Just when things look their bleakest, though, J.J. Burgdorf Havermeier the Third smiles at him and invites him to stand in line. And with that, Dewey Dew's day changes for the better (something more outgoing children may take to heart). Mack's pencil, watercolor, and digital illustrations are a delight. Though they've likely never met an ET, readers won't have any trouble decoding what the unfamiliar words mean or how Dewey Dew feels about his single eye, 3-fingered hands, and lack of hair amid the other students, who are nicely multiracial. ET or not, the first day of school will be ootay. (Picture book. 4-8)
— Kirkus Reviews
MAMA'S NIGHTINGALE was named a Best Book of the Year by Kirkus Reviews