Silly Lilly in What Will I Be Today?
written by Agnes Rosenstiehl
Silly Lilly is a French import published in the United States by Toon Books. Toon prides itself on creating easily accessible children’s comics that utilize basic learning blocks of language combined with vivid visual interaction to help kids learn, and What Will I Be Today? keeps that directive going strong.
What Will I Be Today? takes a fun topic and explores it over the course of a week, as Lilly decides first to be a cook, then a city planner, then a musician, and so on. Framed by simple yet colorful drawings, the story is playful and cute. Each day unfolds almost like an eight-paneled comic strip: There’s a setup, the building of the story, and then the payoff in the form of a punchline from Lilly.
French author and illustrator Agnes Rosenstiehl provides Lilly with a simple story and then goes with it, making a well-rounded story for kids. The message behind the book, of course, is clear: The reader, much like Lilly, can be anything she sets her mind to be, and she can accomplish it with confidence and imagination.
The bright blues, reds, greens, and purples are very inviting, and Rosenstiehl’s crisp artistic style is whimsical yet solid. Lilly has a wide-eyed Little Orphan Annie-type look to her, but she’s an independent spirit all on her own.
Also important is the use of easy-to-understand key words. The vocabulary is direct and simple. What Will I Be Today? is a wonderful book for the youngest readers. Brand-new readers, especially, will find much to enjoy here (and parents who opt to read the book to their young children will find a lot of playfulness and humor here just waiting to be reenacted by a gifted voice actor).