Exclamation Mark

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Written and illustrated by Amy Krouse Rosenthal & Tom Lichtenheld

“This is a story about an exclamation mark.  And this exclamation mark’s story is really everyone’s story.”

Exclamation Mark is an adorable story of self-discovery, told through the eyes of an exclamation mark who recognizes that he does not fit in with the periods that he knows.  The New York Times best-selling team that co-authored and illustrated Duck! Rabbit! and Wumbers have produced another story that is educational and humorous.  Readers of all ages will smile as the exclamation mark attempts various ways to fit in with his period friends.  Can he coil down the tall line that stands above his head? He doesn’t look so different when he lies on his side!  Despite all of these efforts, he realizes that he is just different and really can’t fit in.  The exclamation mark considers running away until a self-assured question mark approaches him.  The question mark understands his unique purpose: he has the special power to turn a statement into a question.  The two work together to help exclamation mark find his place and purpose.  Once he does…

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This is a journey that all readers, regardless of age, can relate to.  Young and pre-readers will benefit from a book that conveys simple conventions of text.  The pages are white dotted line paper and the handwriting-like font is simple and clearly demonstrates use of both upper and lowercase letters.  This book is an excellent choice to help teach pre-readers about conventions of text, children learning to write about punctuation, or a wonderful book for a young reader to read independently.  In addition to the academic purpose of Exclamation Mark, the story encourages discussion about fitting in, standing out, and all of us finding our unique purpose (especially with the help of friends)!

Reviewed by Emily Francis

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