cover image Pedro and George

Pedro and George

Delphine Perret, trans. from the French by Hannele & Associates. S&S/Atheneum, $17.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-4814-2925-2

French author-illustrator Perret's divertissement contains a bouquet of comedic moments. Pedro Crocodile greets his cousin George, who's having a crisis: "I'm fed up with everyone calling me a crocodile. I am an alligator!" he complains. The two sneak into a school to see whether elementary-school children are to blame, and whether they might be edible, as well. "Silence, Josephine, concentrate!" says teacher Mrs. Muiche. "But, miss, there is a crocodile biting my foot!" After defeat at the hands of Josephine, whose judo belt is "yellow-orangey," the reptiles' visit is celebrated with Crocodile and Alligator Week ("They had several wonderful days full of green crepe paper"). Perret (The Big Bad Wolf and Me) draws Pedro and George as tubby, slow-moving couch potatoes%E2%80%94their lime bodies and the children's pink faces are the only spots of color in the wiry line drawings%E2%80%94and she has great fun spoofing customs like weekly dictation, an institution in French schools. Pedro and George seem like a pair who could have an endless series of adventures; a sequel would be welcome. Ages 4%E2%80%938. (June)