An addlepated, snaggle-toothed, hot-pink giant squid decides to run for president. Sounds like a plan.
“I WILL BE THE GREATEST PRESIDENT WHO EVER LIVED! Wanna know why? Here are five important reasons.” Here Reynolds puts the narrative on comic cruise control, each sentence a finely tuned inanity, and Varon complements the verbiage with deadpan comical artwork. Those reasons? Well, the president wears a tie. “I look fabulous in a tie.” He’s also got a big house, he’s famous, and he “does all the talking.” Plus, a president is the big boss. “Hey, Jellyfish! Comb your tentacles! You look terrible! See? Very bossy.” Enter a sardine and a clam, the sardine half-stuck in—or perhaps being eaten by—the clam. Hoping to free the sardine, the squid shows the clam his tie, explains about the size of his house, calls attention to his fame. The clam is unimpressed. Then the giant squid takes on the clam to free the sardine. He nearly has a myocardial infarction, but he frees the sardine. The squid’s a hero, but he’s exhausted. Being president is hard work. Better, he suggests, to be king. “All the power! None of the work!” This is political satire at its most playful, not so much derisive or mocking as a little poke in the eye. He may bloviate, but this squid is an OK guy.
In the tradition of great windbags, meet President—err, King Squid. (Picture book. 4-8)