Be Good to Eddie Lee
Be Good to Eddie Lee
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Annotation: Although Christy considered him a pest, when Eddie Lee, a boy with Down's Syndrome, follows her into the woods, he shares several special discoveries with her.
Catalog Number: #25247
Format: Perma-Bound Edition
All Formats: Search
Special Formats: Inventory Sale Inventory Sale
Copyright Date: 1993
Edition Date: 1997
Illustrator: Cooper, Floyd,
Pages: 32
Availability: Available (Limited Quantities Available / While Supplies Last)
ISBN: Publisher: 0-698-11582-1 Perma-Bound: 0-605-18536-0
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-0-698-11582-8 Perma-Bound: 978-0-605-18536-4
Dewey: E
LCCN: 91046146
Dimensions: 27 cm.
Language: English
ALA Booklist
Christy begins to see and appreciate the beauty of her rural environs under the guidance of Eddie Lee, a young neighbor with Down's syndrome. At first, Christy only tolerates Eddie Lee's companionship at her mother's insistence; she would rather spend her long summer days exploring the woods with pal JimBud. But Eddie Lee persistently follows the pair and ingeniously demonstrates his superior knowledge of and sensitivity to nature. He shows Christy how to catch a salamander, where to find frog eggs and a hidden lake of water lilies, and, most importantly, when to leave creatures undisturbed. A single scene in which Eddie Lee and Christy compare their distorted images in a rippled pond seems unnecessarily heavy-handed, but the portrayal of Eddie Lee as a wise and independent youngster easily overcomes this flaw. Impressionistic oil wash paintings fairly glow with the sunshine that filters through the wooded scenes, a technique that also softens the features of Eddie Lee and his friends, diminishing their physical differences. This title will undoubtedly be valued for its Down's syndrome theme, but detailed references to the pyracantha bush, the belted kingfisher, and the beaver-gnawed birches, supported by Cooper's luminous paintings, also recommend it as a nature story. (Reviewed Jan. 15, 1994)
Horn Book
A boy with Down syndrome eventually wins the respect of two reluctant children by leading them to special places in the woods near their homes. The gentle, carefully wrought tale both directly and allegorically conveys appreciation of differences.
Kirkus Reviews
``God didn't make mistakes, and Eddie Lee was a mistake if there ever was one,'' muses Christy, trying to justify her reluctance to be kind as Mama has said; and with her friend JimBud, she sets out to look for frogs' eggs, hoping to evade the Down's syndrome boy. Cheerfully ignoring their scorn, Eddie Lee tags along, wades in with his shoes on to try (unsuccessfully) to get a waterlily, then takes Christy to a little pond she hadn't known was there to find both lilies and tadpoles—which Eddie Lee urges leaving there, lest their mother be sad; he's also first sees the beauty of the lilies and the humor in Christy's reflection, distorted by ripples. ``I like you, anyway,'' he assures her, affirming his own humanity, too. What makes Fleming's first book so effective are the carefully selected detail and authentic portrayal of the children's attitudes—as well as Cooper's luminous full-bleed art, summoning up all the enchantment of a lovely summer day and presenting Eddie Lee as believably endearing. (Picture book. 4-8)"
Publishers Weekly
In a starred review, PW called this story about a boy with Down's syndrome """"a rarity for its potential to entertain, educate and encourage deeper consideration for others."""" Ages 4-8. (July)
School Library Journal
K-Gr 2-On the first day of summer vacation, Christy follows her friend JimBud to a nearby pond, looking for something to do. When Eddie Lee, a child with Down's syndrome, follows them, Christy tells him to stay home, and JimBud tries to chase him away. Only when Eddie Lee leads the girl to a hidden place to show her frog eggs and water lillies does she fully grasp that everyone is special and has unique, individual gifts. Cooper's attractive, full-page borderless scenes of the rural South- waist-high, straw-colored weeds; a clear, rippling stone-bottomed brook; hazy green woods and water-are painted in oil wash, but have the smudgy appearance of oil pastel. Clearly the focus of the illustrations is the insightfully realistic portraits of Eddie Lee, and it is Cooper's artful accompaniment to the text that truly brings out the author's positive message. Berniece Rabe's Where's Chimpy? (Albert Whitman, 1988) is aimed at three to five-year-olds, as is Cairo Jasmine's Our Brother Has Down's Syndrome (Annick, 1985). Be Good to Eddie Lee is welcome for slightly older children, but mostly for the realism it exudes rather than the somewhat contrived story.-Susan Scheps, Shaker Heights Public Library, OH
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ALA Booklist
Horn Book
Kirkus Reviews
Publishers Weekly
School Library Journal
Word Count: 1,490
Reading Level: 3.6
Interest Level: K-3
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 3.6 / points: 0.5 / quiz: 47946 / grade: Lower Grades
Reading Counts!: reading level:3.1 / points:2.0 / quiz:Q27929
Lexile: AD380L

Christy's mother always tells her to be good to Eddie Lee, a neighborhood child with Down's Syndrome. But Christy wants to run and play -- and not worry about Eddie Lee tagging along. One hot summer day, though, Eddie Lee takes Christy to a secret place in the woods and teaches her that beautiful things can be found in unexpected places.

"What makes Fleming's first book so effective are the carefully selected details and authentic portrayal of the children's attitudes -- as well as Cooper's luminous art, summoning up all the enchantment of a lovely summer day and presenting Eddie Lee as believably endearing". -- Kirkus Reviews, pointer review 

"(A book) that can lead children away from harmful stereotypes and labels". -- Book Links

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