Chapman's first book is an ingenious exploration of language, rhymes, and manners: Peremptory requests in the spirit of the title (``Pass the muffin, Puffin'') get a variety of negative responses (``Sorry''; ``Never''; ``Forget it'') until a grown-up demands, ``What's the magic word?'' and the manners shape up: ``Please pass the salami, Mommy.'' ``After you, Kangaroo.'' A last exchange is just for fun: ``Be my snack, Mac?'' ``No thank you, Alligator...See you later!'' The toothy alligator and the other animals, plus a brown-skinned child, are all cheerfully rendered in arresting collages of paper and fabric in vibrant colors.
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