A spider on a quest to drop the “Bitzy” and become “just Itzy” runs up against some challenges—and a few familiar nursery-rhyme characters.
Itzy the spider is tired of being called “Itzy Bitzy.” On his first day of spindergarten, Itzy decides to prove to everyone that he’s a big spider by catching his own lunch. But spinning a web is hard work, and every time Itzy gets close to catching a fly, something gets in the way—whether it’s a girl sitting on a tuffet, an old lady swallowing everything in sight, or a dangerous waterspout. Will Itzy ever get a chance to prove himself and shake his pesky nickname? Illustrated in bold vignettes by Geisel Award winner Greg Pizzoli, Itzy’s amusing adventures are a clever balm for the frustrations of preschoolers fed up with being too little.
Krumwiede and Pizzoli have taken the old spider finger-song and put it on steroids. The result is a wacky, hip story about gaining independence. —The New York Times Book Review
Bright cartoon illustrations in spring colors expand the text with witty details and visual drama. Both art and story contain humor for adults as well as children, allowing for layered readings. … An amusing take on starting school and gaining independence. —The Horn Book
This book that combines nursery rhymes and folk songs about spiders with a first-day-of-school story about not giving up offers a little something for everyone. … It’s so much fun to see old favorites in new tales. Spidery good fun with a can-do message. —Kirkus Reviews
Onomatopoeia accentuates the text in a narrative that emphasizes the youngster’s own independence, perseverance, and pride in accomplishment. Itzy’s fears and growing confidence are easily identifiable for young readers. —School Library Journal
Everybody has a backstory, including the Itsy Bitsy Spider. … Pizzoli’s use of color and texture is as strong as ever. —Publishers Weekly
Krumwiede spins a solid and entertaining backstory for the itsy bitsy protagonist, and the book cleverly and humorously incorporates various spider-themed nursery songs/ rhymes. —Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
Greg Pizzoli provides whimsical, fun embellishment to the story. —Midwest Book Review