I was not sure what to expect of Lulu & Zoey: A Sister Story. But it was not what occurred in this Carrie Finison picture book.
We have an outside narrator telling us that sometimes sisters do “this” or “that” with examples given by sisters Lulu and Zoey. Sometimes Lulu wants to play, Zoey does not. Sometimes Zoey has a really cool pen and even though she will share, Lulu steals the rest of the art supplies. Sometimes Lulu decorates Zoey’s diary, and Zoey is not please. And sometimes sisters fight until their aunt tells them, Time out! And sometimes sisters need a nap, and must recharge so they can play together, and create a special story together that uses both of their talents (and all the art supplies). And then there is a small (but important surprise) at the end.
The show and tell formula is normal for picture books, but there is a lot of tell. We are told and that is reinforced by Brittany Jackson’s illustrations. We see a curious Lulu and an angry Zoey. We see the sisters cozy together while reading their special creation. What we are not told, and it just naturally comes across, is the diverse nature of the characters as the family is biracial.
I am not sure I loved this book, but I know it is has a special place waiting for it on your (or someone else’s) bookshelf. It would make a nice new sibling book, or if your children are having rough patch in their relationship. It works well as both a one-on-one read, and a group read. Most ages can listen, or the starting reader (with assistance) could do solo.