Cover image for Russell's secret
Russell's secret
Hurwitz, Johanna.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : HarperCollins Publishers, 2001.
Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 26 cm
When Russell decides to stay home from nursery school and be a baby just like his new sister, he discovers that being treated like a baby when you are a big boy is no fun at all.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR LG 3.0 0.5 55123.
Added Author:

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PIC BK Juvenile Fiction Central Closed Stacks
PIC BK Juvenile Fiction Picture Books
PIC BK Juvenile Fiction Picture Books
PIC BK Juvenile Fiction Picture Books

On Order



Have you ever heard the words "You can stay at home and be a baby today" on a school day? Russell has. And, boy, is he in for a surprise!

Author Notes

Children's author, Johanna Hurwitz was born and raised in New York City. She attended Queens College where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree and then Columbia University for her master's in Library Science.

She worked as a librarian and taught graduate courses in children's literature and storytelling. Her first title, Busybody Nora was published in 1976 and she has been writing a book or two a year ever since. Her other titles include Dear Emma, Summer with Elisa, A Llama in the Family, Busybody Nora and the Adventures of Ali Baba Bernstein. She has written over 60 titles.

Her works have won her several state awards, including the Texas Bluebonnet Award, the Kentucky Bluegrass Award, the Garden State Children's Choice Award, and the Wyoming Indian Paintbrush Award.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Ages 4-8. One morning, four-year-old Russell decides he doesn't want to go to school. He wants to stay home and be a baby again, like sister Eliza. His mother lets him stay home, but Russell soon discovers that being a baby isn't as he remembers: there's yucky oatmeal for breakfast; no television or Legos ("you might swallow them"); a bottle of warm milk for a snack; and horrible mashed food for lunch. Maybe being a big boy has some advantages. Maybe it's not too late to go to school--but he'll keep the reason for his tardiness a secret. Hurwitz portrays Russell's feelings in simple, descriptive prose as bright, cartoonlike illustrations supply details and create scenes children will recognize from their past and present. Kids, especially those with young siblings, will relate to Russell's feelings and his glorification of the good old days. --Shelle Rosenfeld

School Library Journal Review

PreS-Gr 1-Preschool blahs and sibling rivalry cause Russell to resist morning preparations, so Mom allows him to stay home and be a baby like his sister for a day. Of course, distasteful meals of pablum and mashed bananas, being banned from television and Legos, and general boredom soon convince the boy that his mother is right: "It's fun to be a baby when you are a baby. It's just not so much fun to be a baby when you're a big boy." Maione's cartoon characters cruise through cheerful vignettes; even the mother's initial frustration is low-grade. Hurwitz continues to deliver tales helpful to youngsters and parents managing everyday issues of growing up.-Gay Lynn Van Vleck, Henrico County Library, Glen Allen, VA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.