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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
Scissortown is a very neat little town. Everyone’s hair is nicely trimmed, their grass evenly cut, their hedges manicured, and even their kites have lovely long tails with finely cut ribbons attached. Things just couldn’t get any better in Scissortown and everyone is very happy. That is, until the Slicers and Dicers come to town. They wreak havoc, chopping everything to bits until the entire town is a mess. The only solution, the mayor believes, is to bury anything sharp to discourage the Slicers and Dicers from staying in Scissortown. But this only creates more problems: long unruly hair, overgrown hedges, awkward situations when serving cake. In fact, the list of problems is a little humorous in its blatant realism. And it takes two children, Tommy and Tina, to set things right.
Margaret Welwood’s beautifully illustrated picture book story, Scissortown, is a fun story, pure fantasy. But it presents a complicated dilemma and allows the children to solve the problem, thus teaching young children, young readers, that they too can help. There are many ways children can help: playing with a younger sibling, keeping their room tidy, the list of possible ‘help’ chores is quite extensive. The story challenges the reader to use their own creative thoughts to come up with an ingenuous idea to help out. Scissortown is a sweet, almost nonsensical type of story with a big message: find creative ways to help others. The illustrations are colorful and help carry the story along. A charming way to teach young children responsibility and the importance of being helpful.