THE BETTER BROWN STORIES by Allan Ahlberg

THE BETTER BROWN STORIES

by & illustrated by
Age Range: 8 - 12
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KIRKUS REVIEW

 Is there no respect for authority? Can fictional characters rebel against their author? The Browns do just that in this funny book, and what follows are the author's attempts to fulfill his creations' desires. The ride begins when Mrs. Brown complains that she doesn't want to vacuum; she and the family visit The Writer to let him know they want changes in the plot. Things get a little crazy, particularly when a birthday wish to be 13 instead of 11 tumbles notions of time, and no one is safe, not even The Writer's Mother, who is abducted by mysterious strangers. The baby gets his turn, too, with a snowman who doesn't like comparisons with Raymond Briggs's The Snowman. Wegner's black-and-white vignette drawings provide humor on the side by deliberately contradicting the text (``Coffee actually,'' says the vicar in the illustration, although he's been reported to be having a cup of tea). Ahlberg (The Bear Nobody Wanted, 1993, etc.), better known for his picture books, has produced a fabulous family read-aloud. Adults will enjoy the existential overtones and the echoes of famous plots, while young readers and listeners will delight in every chapter of this fractious escapade. (Fiction. 8-12)

Pub Date: Feb. 1st, 1996
ISBN: 0-670-85894-3
Page count: 97pp
Publisher: Viking
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15th, 1995




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