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Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite
Florence the Dancing Flamingo is a children’s animal storybook written by Karen Magnan and illustrated by Osvaldo Grundy. Florence loved to dance! Every morning, she would leave her nest made of twigs and dance to the music she heard in her head. Her best friend, Francine, loved Florence, but she couldn’t help but be skeptical about the idea of a dancing flamingo. Still, Francine loved to watch Florence dance. She danced beautifully and seeing her twirling and dancing made Francine smile. She asked Florence who she planned to dance for anyway, and Florence answered simply and honestly. She knew she was a dancer, and she’d find people who could appreciate what she did. Even if she had to leave the nature preserve, she would dance. And so, Florence decided to walk into town and find those people who would want to see her dance. It was a bit scary walking along the road, but she persevered and eventually came upon the Flamingo Nightclub. A sign announced rehearsals for a Flamenco show, and Florence decided then and there this would be where she would dance.
Karen Magnan’s Florence the Dancing Flamingo is a marvelous tale about a flamingo who wanted to share her art with the rest of the world. Starting with her dancing to the music in her head, Florence takes the giant and terrifying step of leaving the nature preserve and finding her audience. Magnan’s story is inspirational, sharing the message that kids can live their dreams with hard work, persistence, and courage, assuring them they too can dance to the music in their heads. Osvaldo Grundy’s imaginative and clever line drawings make the premise a reality as Florence dresses in her finery and appears on stage to applause and acclaim. Florence the Dancing Flamingo is well-written and a grand selection for a young reader or for storytime. It’s most highly recommended.