Saturday, January 4, 2014

Jilli, That's Silly!: A Story About Being a Girl by Christa Carpenter- A review

My family fell in love with the illustrations of Mark Wayne Adams when we purchased The Belly Button Fairy from Bobbie Hinman, the author, at the Decatur Book Festival several years ago.  So, you can imagine my delight when I was contacted by Mr. Adams to review a copy of Jilli, That's Silly!: A Story About Being a Girl by Christa Carpenter and illustrated by Mark Wayne Adams. My oldest daughter squealed with delight when we opened the package and saw the cover of the book. It spoke to her- one seven year old girl to another. 

Have you ever spent the day with a seven year old girl? Well, if you haven't, after reading this book  you will have a pretty good idea what it is like to be a seven year old girl. Jilli is a girl on the move, jumping from one thing to the next at lightening speed. All the while, an exasperated mother tries to talk some sense into her daughter's silly behavior. The book was actually a bit uncomfortable to read the first time with my daughter because the overreaching message that mothers need to let their daughters act silly because that is what being young is all about hit a little too close to home. Throughout the book, the mother repeatedly tells her daughter how silly she is acting. I can relate to that mantra. I am am constantly telling my oldest to calm down, stop being so silly, be careful, and the list goes on. However, at the end of the book, the mother sagely tells her daughter that all that silly behavior was exactly how a girl should act when she is seven. 

The book ends with a page of discussion questions. My daughter and I spent some time using those questions to talk about just what it means to be silly. I explained how sometimes her silly behavior gets a little bit out of hand and gets her in trouble. And likewise, she explained to me how I could do a better job just letting go and having fun. This book is perfect for mothers and daughters to read together. Sometimes a mom needs to be reminded what it feels like to be a young girl.

My daughter was so smitten with this book, she insisted on sitting at the computer and writing a review. I have copied and pasted it verbatim, minus her name.

Dear, Christa Carpenter, and Mark Wane Adams, my name is Miss M. I am seven years old. I liked Jilli That’s Silly because she was trying her mom’s cloths and shoes on and they were too big for her, and she was pretending to be a rock star to. And she brought her baby dolls and all their things to, and she had a book her mom’s lipstick, a scarf, and a comb all in her bag. And she brought all of the things from the kitchen outside, and she was bossing her brother around like a mom would do, and she dressed up her dog and cat. And this book reminded me of when I was trying my mom’s shoes on.
                                               I   LIKED   JILLI   THAT’S,   SILLY   A   LOT!!!!!!   

(She was very proud of the last sentence. She thought it was great that she used all caps. It is taking everything for me to not change that part. I feel like all caps is yelling. Again, this difference in tastes between a mother and daughter is why reading this book is so important.) I should also add here that my daughter so loved the part where Jilli tried on her mom's clothes that she went right for my closet and put on a couple of my dresses. 

If you would like to purchase the book, you can find it on Amazon or through Barnes and Noble. To read more about the author and illustrator, check out the Mark Wayne Adams, Inc. website.

Age Range: 5 - 7 years 
Grade Level: Kindergarten - 2 
Hardcover: 36 pages 
Publisher: Mark Wayne Adams, Inc. (January 1, 2013) 
Language: English 
ISBN-10: 1596160152 
ISBN-13: 978-1596160156

 * I was given this book free-of-charge by the author in exchange for my honest opinion. All opinions expressed are my own.


  1. What a beautiful illustration!

    I have always been sad that my closet has been where we stashed presents and thus off-limits to the kids. My daughters are both now *taller* than me and have bigger feet so there will be not trying on of those. :)

    1. I STILL go into my mom's closet and "borrow" clothes when I go home to visit. I guess leaned habits never change.


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