Ling & Ting: Twice as Silly by Grace Lin
Ling and Ting are back … and since they’re twins, of course they are also Twice as Silly. If you’re wondering how they’re Not Exactly the Same, you’ll have to go back to their treasure-filled 2010 debut. If you’re curious about their no-they-are-not-mismatched shoes, or their jovial barber-buddy who joins them even before their first adventure, check out their natal celebrations in Ling & Ting Share a Birthday.
Grace Lin’s third twinly installation is another toothsome romp. She explains in her “Artist’s Note,” that “the color palette … was inspired by the bright blue summer sky and the late-ripening strawberries of my first garden.” The girls’ opening adventure here just happens to involve said garden, although why grow the fruit when you might go straight for perfectly frosted, berry-topped cupcakes instead? Ting insists, Ling watches knowingly, Ting perseveres: no cupcakes? no problem! “‘Beans are seeds,'” as Ling agrees – even of the jelly variety, right?
Back in the house, Ting attempts to imbue additional luck in all her toys in “Lucky Red Paint.” Their next event takes them “On the Swings” over trees, buildings, even far-out space, then to an intrepid search for “Apples” complete with monkeys, penguins, and worms, oh my! They practice “Reading Minds” as well as reading books, and are inspired to write their own “Not a Silly Story” in which they cleverly, creatively, manage to include all their many adventures … and, of course, cupcakes and jelly beans.
Lin’s self-proclaimed “very, very silly” girlies are also very, very self-reliantly inventive. They require no plugs, no cords, no screens to produce their own out-of-this-world merriment. They feed their originality with laughter, they fuel their imagination with stories, they toast their exploits with cupcakes. All in a day of play. Maybe they’ll let a few oldsters join in … I call ‘Next!’
Readers: Children, Middle Grade