The Jellybeans and the Big Dance is the first in a newish series by Laura Numeroff (author), Nate Evans (author), and Lynn Munsinger (illustrator). Here's what publisher Abrams Books for Young Readers has to say about the book:
Emily loves to dance and can't wait to meet the other girls in her class, who are sure to be just like her. But instead she meets Nicole, a tomboy who would rather be playing soccer; Bitsy, who loves arts and crafts; and Anna, a shy bookworm who has no interest at all in dancing. Realizing they have to work together to make their dance recital a success, the girls learn to love each other's differences and strengths as they band together and name their group the Jellybeans!
I would describe this book as sweet (not unlike jellybeans) in all respects. I love how the four characters learn to get along so well by the end of the book, despite the major differences in their personalities. On a related note, it's really cute how they come up with the name for their group:
The illustrations, too, are very sweet. Their colors blend together so nicely, and there are lots of them...at least two or three scenes on each spread. (As a writer, I have to admit that I often focus way too much on the words in picture books, even though the pictures are just as important. Having this blog is really teaching me to slow down and look closely at all the different components of a book.)
"Jellybeans are all different flavors, but they still go well together," said Emily. "Maybe we could, too. We can be the dancing Jellybeans!"
The Jellybeans and the Big Book Bonanza and looks very entertaining. It takes place in a library instead of a dance studio, but Emily's love for ballet is still apparent.
In the bios at the back of The Jellybeans and the Big Dance, the authors and illustrator each mention their favorite flavor of jellybean. I have to admit that I'm a little more into dark chocolate than jellybeans these days, but if I had to choose a jellybean flavor, I'd choose black licorice. How about you?