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THE BALLYMARA FLOOD by Chad Stuart

THE BALLYMARA FLOOD

by Chad Stuart, illustrated by George Booth

Age Range: 4 - 8

Pub Date: March 1st, 1996
ISBN: 0-15-205698-X
Publisher: Harcourt

 In the Irish town of Ballymara, a young boy takes a bath. When the lad can't turn the water off, a flood of biblical proportions sweeps through his home, street, and the whole town. Succeeding waves of impressive, would-be rescuers--from the fire department to the Corps of Engineers to the Navy (at one point a frigate is seen cruising down Main Street)--fail to stanch the geyser, and it is left to the boy to take action and save the day. Stuart's first book frames this tale of mayhem as a quatrained jig (`` `We have to find the main,' he gasped/And waded down the hall./The stop-valve came off in his hands,/Which did no good at all''), supple enough for nearly everyone's read-aloud tastes, from gentle lilt to all-out performance art. An author's note suggests that an Irish accent would not be out of place in attempts to read this out loud. Booth's patently demented creatures--human and beast--provide a match made in Ireland for the text, and elevate it to high good humor. (Picture book. 4-8)