Alligator Sue (Hardcover)

By Sharon Arms Doucet, Anne Wilsdorf (Illustrator)

Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR), 9780374302184, 40pp.

Publication Date: August 1, 2003

List Price: 17.00*
* Individual store prices may vary.


"All you can do is be who you is."

Suzanne Marie Sabine Chicot Thibodeaux (called Sue for short) lives on a houseboat deep in Louisiana's Atchafalaya Swamp. One lazy summer afternoon when the air grows heavier than a catfish's bath towel, a hurricane swoops Sue up -- only to drop her like a hot patate into the swamp below. Sue finds herself nose-to-snout with a queen-sized, prickly-backed mama Alligator. Luckily, Mama Coco is no ordinary gator. She invites Sue into her family and teaches her all she knows. Sue tries hard to be an alligator; still, every once in a while, she recalls a wisp of a familiar song and begins to wonder: Who am I -- a Gator or a Girl?

How this spirited heroine claims her identity and her name -- Alligator Sue -- makes a funny, affecting, and wise tale, illustrated with irresistible joie de vivre.

About the Author

Sharon Arms Doucet is also the author of Lapin Plays Possum, which Kirkus Reviews called "a must-have for storytellers and storylovers alike" in a starred review. She lives in Lafayette, Louisiana. Anne Wilsdorf is an illustrator whose previous books include Garrison Keillor's The Old Man Who Loved Cheese. She lives in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Praise For Alligator Sue

"Wilsdorf's loose black line and watercolor wash make the girl's acceptance into the reptilian family seem plausible. . .A triumphant tale of finding one's way in the world." --Starred, Publisher's Weekly

"Doucet's text is a storyteller's delight, full of fun and with a sassy new heroine. Wilsdorf's energetic illustrations are masterfully embedded throughout the text, blowing the story along like pleasurable windy microbursts. Laissez les bon temps roulez." --Kirkus Reviews

"Doucet's ear for the Louisiana Jingo gives the story bounce and imagery abounds. . .Children will love this 'rich as pecan pralines' tale of spunky Sue." --School Library Journal