No Fighting, No Biting! (An I Can Read Book, Level 2)

by Else Holmelund Minarik

Paperback, 1978



Local notes

R Min




HarperCollins (1978), Edition: 1, Paperback, 64 pages


Sometimes Rosa and Willy behave like the two little alligators in the stories Cousin Joan tells them.

Original publication date


Physical description

64 p.; 8.52 inches

User reviews

LibraryThing member ezwicky
This book shows its age in places, and its really more about stranger danger than about fighting and biting (although there is an undercurrent of "If you fight with your sibling too much a large alligator will eat you") My daughter likes it more than the adults do.
LibraryThing member sweetiegherkin
Joan just wants to read her book but her little cousins Rosa and Willy keep bickering as they sit beside her. She agrees to tell them a story to entertain them, and she chooses to tell a tale about two alligator siblings whose constant fighting gets them into sticky situations.

The best word to
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describe this book is "quaint." It's not just that the book is more than 60 years old, it's also that the characters are dressed like they are 60 years older than the publication date. The appellation "Cousin Joan" also sounds like something out of a Louisa May Alcott novel. The book is clearly designed to tell a moral lesson and yet it manages to come off without sounding too preachy. Cousin Joan's story is meant to illustrate to Rosa and Willy how their arguments can cause them (and others) discomfort, and I absolutely love how the message doesn't exactly sink in with Rosa and Willy right away as that seems so true to life with young children! The story about Rosa's tooth seems like a random inclusion and a distraction from the main part of the book. Maurice Sendak's illustrations - entirely in greens, yellows, grays, browns, and white - seem a little bit bland at first glance, but they are very good at portraying a variety of emotions and thus helping to emphasize the text.

All and all, this is a strange little book that I simultaneously enjoyed and didn't enjoy. As a review, that's probably not very helpful, but it is indeed true.
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LibraryThing member Cheryl_in_CC_NV
Hm. It's amusing, but I don't think amazingly so. It's a reflection of authentic childhood of any age - siblings that close in age will bicker. And they won't learn not to just from a book.

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½ (38 ratings; 3.8)
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