Review by Publisher's Weekly Review
Piggybacking onto the original Madeline books by his grandfather, Marciano sends the twelve little girls in two straight lines to Rome, where his red-haired heroine chases a thief and saves a house full of cats. Like its models, this add-on is filled with both yellow and full-color pages, absurd plot twists and a Bemelmans-style visual guide of places to visit. Regrettably, as in his Madeline Says Merci, Marciano's didactic theme reduces the spirited Madeline to a smug counterfeit. When the thief Catarina explains that she steals only to feed Rome's starving stray cats, Madeline self-righteously says, While I applaud your charity,/ Let me say this with clarity:/ STEALING IS WRONG--no matter the cause. Awkward syntax and forced rhymes abound (Madeline said, 'My, what a nice kitten.'/ Her dog was of a different opinion), and at their best the illustrations are no more than serviceable imitations of Bemelmans's style. The joy and brio of the original books go missing. Ages 3-up. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved All rights reserved.
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