Books by George Booth

HERE, GEORGE! by Sandra Boynton
CHILDREN'S
Released: May 1, 2018

"It's a one-joke book, but with such master humorists at work, who needs anything more? (Board book. 1-3)"
Renowned cartoonists Boynton and Booth team up for a delightful day in the life of canine George. Read full book review >
I DIDN'T ASK TO BE BORN (BUT I'M GLAD I WAS) by Bill Cosby
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 1, 2011

"For fans, a small Philly cheesesteak, nonchalant as youth itself, by a comic master."
The Cos again waxes funny on the commonplace happenings of life as we may know it. Read full book review >
CHILDREN'S
Released: July 20, 2010

A pun-filled week goes on about four-and-a-half days too long. Every morning, Ron Faster sprints to the road and boards the school bus. Given that the driver is Ivan Stuckinaditch, the bus promptly become stuck in...guess what...a ditch. Ron and the other kids, Viola Fuss, Izzy Normal and so on, get to school late. The principal, Miss Ingashoe, moves slowly because she's "missing something." Chuckie Upkins is always running to the bathroom, and Oopsie Spiller causes the daily resignations of Janitor Iquit and Assistant Janitor Quitoo. Over and over and over. The pattern changes on Friday, but readers likely won't care. Booth's tiny ink drawings busy up the pages with occasionally funny images, but they can't keep this one-joke scenario from being about 128 pages too long. (Humor. 7-11)Read full book review >
STARLIGHT GOES TO TOWN by Harry Allard
ANIMALS
Released: Sept. 8, 2008

Allard resurfaces after 17 years with a surreal tale of a chicken who dreams of becoming a high-fashion model but ends up taking what she can get. The other hens mock her pretensions, but when a fairy godmother offers to grant her wishes, Starlight LaPoule (original name: Ethel Fae Klucksworth) immediately lays a flashy convertible and roars off toward the runways of Milan. Unfortunately, she's dissed there too and worse yet, upon her return to the States, a change in fairy-godmother personnel leaves her able to lay only appliances and other bric-a-brac. As the odd non-conclusion has it, Starlight, more irritated than daunted, proceeds to open up an ongoing flea market. Booth illustrates this postmodern alternative to Oh, the Places You'll Go! with his usual array of comically scowling characters and rapidly sketched clutter. Consider it a poke at the flock of more optimistic tales of barnyard dreams, like Robert Kinerk's Clorinda (2003), illustrated by Steven Kellogg, or Mary Jane and Herm Auch's Beauty and the Beaks (2007). (Picture book. 6-8, adult)Read full book review >
NIT-PICKIN’ by Nancy van Laan
ANIMALS
Released: July 1, 2008

Though perhaps not particularly amusing to children (or their parents) who have actually battled the little scalp-suckers, this bouncy-jouncy plaint at least attempts to put a comical spin on the experience. "I was scritcha-scratchin' / while a batch-a bugs / was hatchin', / yes, those cooties were / attachin' to my head," moans the red-haired young narrator. Unfortunately, everyone in her extended family has a remedy—from Gramma's mayonnaise cure to Mama's plastic wrap, from Gramps's kerosene concoction to (at last) the dog's tube of special shampoo. Above the cartoon scenes of bedraggled country characters stomping ferociously about, Booth runs a thin continuous strip showing little bugs parachuting down to a seemingly forested cranial landscape, hatching in droves in a "nit picknic area" and wading through various sorts of gloop. Closing with a view of a nit graveyard thick with tombstones bearing legends like "Here lies Itty-Bitty Nitty, Jr.", this kneeslapper makes a suitable alternative where Miriam Moss's Scritch Scratch (2001) has already been picked out. (Picture book. 6-8)Read full book review >
NEVER TEASE A WEASEL by Jean Conder Soule
ANIMALS
Released: March 27, 2007

New illustrations add a visual zip to this bit of verbal tomfoolery that was missing from the 1964 original. Soule's verses ring changes on the benefits of providing various animals with clothing or other comforts—"You could give a mule a pool and some jaunty swimming trunks / or send a case of Spanish lace to a pair of lady skunks"—with the titular warning for a refrain. Wielding pen and brush with loose fluidity, Booth presents an array of gleeful children, along with wall-eyed animals responding, usually, but not always, positively, to their comically inappropriate new garb. Despite the nonviolent ending, plus a probably dated reference to a "riding habit," the bouncy text is as perfect as ever for reducing a young audience to hysterics, and Booth's scribbly art kicks it up an additional notch. Not every re-illustrated reissue is an improvement, but here's an exception. (Picture book. 6-8)Read full book review >
WHO INVITED YOU? by Candace Fleming
ANIMALS
Released: Oct. 1, 2001

Rollicking counting fun takes place in a swamp like no other. When a little girl decides to go polling in the swamp, she has no idea of the passengers she will soon acquire . . . all of them uninvited and unwelcome. But as the guests figure, "If you got room for one, you got room for two." So possum, skunk, frog, muskrat, heron, coon, beaver, and otter all join the boat, which soon has not a spare inch of room left. But no counting book stops at just nine, and this one is no exception. Suddenly a looming gator makes ten—all double-paged spread of him, getting bigger and bigger, "a smilin' / a slinkin' / a-blinky-blanky-winkin'." But where will he fit? No problem. The boat may not have room for gator, but gator certainly has room for all of its annoying passengers. In the twisted ending, the little girl is at last free to continue her journey. Alone. Booth's uproarious watercolors leave just enough of a suggestion that the animals escaped being lunch to make the ending humorous and there hasn't been a gator like this one in a long time. Fleming's (A Big Cheese for the White House, 1999, etc.) sense of rhythm and rhyme make this a great read-aloud and the combination of author and illustrator count up to big fun. Pair this with Nancy Van Laan's Possum Come a-Knockin' (1990) and April Wayland's It's Not My Turn to Look for Grandma (1995) for an all-Booth extravaganza. (Picture book. 4-8)Read full book review >
THE BALLYMARA FLOOD by Chad Stuart
CHILDREN'S
Released: March 1, 1996

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) Read full book review >
IT'S NOT MY TURN TO LOOK FOR GRANDMA! by April Halprin Wayland
CHILDREN'S
Released: June 1, 1995

This down-home tale of the oddball antics of a granny is a perfect fit for Booth's distinctive illustrations. Ma's hard at work, so she keeps sending one of the kids off to fetch Grandma. But Grandma is always up to something eccentric, soaking her foot in the stew pot on the stove, painting the kids' coats bright colors, sliding down the haystack with her many animal pals. She's too busy to help, until Ma asks that she play her banjo. That Grandma will do, and the evening comes to a close with a banjo-picking, sing-along hoedown. Wayland (To Rabbittown, 1989) kindly includes music and words to the tune, so readers can sing, too). Booth tones his people down a notch, though Ma's hitched-up elbows and Grandma's clodhopper shoes convey character with a minimum of detail. The animals, though, make the book, and as Grandma's menagerie includes porcupines, ducks, cats, dogs, and raccoons, there's ample opportunity for goofy cartooning. A brand new hill tale with so much pep readers will swear it's been handed down for generations. Read it out loud. (Picture book. 5-7) Read full book review >