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Reviewed by Mamta Madhavan for Readers' Favorite
The City of Smogg is choked by a thick blanket of pollution. The people who live there walk around like zombies. Animals and plants are non-existent there. It is outside this place that Calvin Callioni, the ringmaster of the most splendidly spectacular circus of Starzborough, is planning to set up his circus in The Most Splendidly Spectacular Circus of Starzborough: The City of Smogg by Michelle Path. The ringmaster pulls out the microphone and invites the residents of the city to come and watch the circus. The residents are perplexed and there is a lot of commotion. President Hightower thinks it is nonsense and asks the police officers to throw Calvin Callioni into jail. As the parade begins, the citizens of Smogg become curious. Will they step out of the city walls and discover the world outside?
The story is about hope and accepting change. I like the manner in which Calvin breathes life into the city and fills the residents with hope and enthusiasm with the help of his circus. The illustrations are lively and I like the layout and font the author has chosen. Together they breathe life into the characters and story, making it an appealing tale. It also encourages children to accept change as many times it can turn lives from mundane to exciting. The messages of living in harmony with nature and caring for the environment are encouraging to children and the author conveys this beautifully through the story. This is definitely a must-have book in homes and school libraries because of the wonderful messages it has for young readers.