Zelda and Ivy: The Runaways



Seuss Award winner is great fun for early readers.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Sisters play well together and use their imaginations.

Violence & scariness
Not applicable
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this award-winning book for beginning readers includes three stories full of kid imagination. In one, the sisters pretend to run away but stick to their own yard (their parents know where they are, but this is never spelled out). In another, they make a potion they call "creative juice" to help them think of a poem idea. Some literal-minded kids may think the girls are really running away and their parents don't notice, or that the potion is real or something to drink (they don't drink it -- they throw it on their heads) -- so it's definitely worth checking in with kids to see whether they understood the story.

Kids say

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What's the story?

Three chapters -- The Runaways, The Time Capsule, and The Secret Concoction -- feature young fox sisters Zelda and Ivy. In The Runaways, Zelda and Ivy escape eating cucumber sandwiches by packing a suitcase and running away to their backyard. In The Time Capsule, the girls bury a couple of their favorite things for future children, then realize they miss them. In The Secret Concoction, Zelda can't think of a haiku poem to write her grandmother, so Ivy makes \"creative juice\" to help Zelda along. A very different creative idea results.

Is it any good?


Just like any good Seuss book, Theodor Seuss Geisel Award winner ZELDA AND IVY: THE RUNAWAYS dives right into the fun stuff and keeps kids reading. Author Laura Kvasnosky's illustrations are friendly and colorful and reward young readers after only a few sentences of hard pronunciation work. She makes simple fox features surprisingly expressive. Kids will be challenged here and there with words like "haiku" and a blanket edge described as having "pussy-willow puffs," so this probably isn't a book kids will toss aside after one reading. Happily, the way the stories are presented will make them more up for the challenge.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the sisters and their big ideas. Why did they pretend to run away? When Zelda's book gets creative juice on it, what does she do with it?

Book details

Author:Laura McGee Kvasnosky
Illustrator:Laura McGee Kvasnosky
Genre:For Beginning Readers
Book type:Fiction
Publisher:Candlewick Press
Publication date:May 9, 2006
Number of pages:48
Publisher's recommended age(s):4 - 7
Read aloud:4
Read alone:6

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  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Adult Written byavid reader and mom December 3, 2009


Funny and true to life -- i think sisters may see each other in these stories.
Adult Written byJon Lovitz May 20, 2009


I was excited when I saw the title, because I thought it would be about Link and Hyrule, etc. I thought they had been turned into foxes from an evil spell by Ganondorf. Boy, was I ever wrong! But its still cute.
Adult Written byLeenah October 1, 2009
It's a good set of stories.


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