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Joe and Sparky, Superstars!

Candlewick Press, August 2012
Hardcover ISBN 978-0-7636-4578-6
Paperback ISBN 978-0-7636-6059-8

The unlikely duo return in a very funny tale of friendship, derring-do, and the discovery that, bold or shy, anyone can become a superstar.

When fun-seeking Joe, a giraffe, takes a reluctant Sparky, a turtle, on a wild ride across the famous cageless zoo to see a mysterious box displaying a talent show, the two decide they must compete to be the next famous pair. But what are their talents? Joe can run fast, wiggle his ears, and touch his nose with his tongue (not to mention drive a car). But Sparky doesn t know what his special skill is. Can the enthusiastic encouragement of Joe the World s Best Talent Finder help the retiring Sparky become a star?


A Bankstreet Book of the Year

★ "This warm buddy story is just about perfect for new readers who are forging new friendships. Amusing color illustrations on each spread (usually involving sight gags with Sparky's little legs and shell), four short chapters filled with easy sight words and lots of action, plus enough complexity to make it a bit of a challenge, make this a good choice for readers who are ready for chapter books. They will enjoy watching this funny duo, especially when Joe's plans do not turn out as planned. Being in on a joke is a treat for young readers, and this little treasure is one that will get passed around. Like the Hokey Pokey, that's what it is all about." --Kirkus, starred review

"Michalak and Remkiewicz have written another enjoyable book about two friends who bring out the best in each other.-School Library Journal

"Writing a simple, clear chapter book for young people just graduating from easy-readers is quite a task. . . . Here, with a book long enough to feel like an accomplishment but short enough not to be intimidating, Michalak has hit the right balance." –Virginian-Pilot

Fun and Games

Three madcap activities for public librarians, school librarians, educators, and other swell children's programmers. Download it here.

Are you a "Joe" or a "Sparky"? Do you like to stretch your neck out and see the world? Or stay inside your shell? Take the quiz and find out.