A little boy imagines all the different things he might be...and do.
Each stanza of Merz and Blow's rhyming text begins with "If I were made of..." and amusingly shows, as well as tells, a variety of possibilities, all the more appealing for their unexpectedness. As "scales and fins," he's green with webbed hands and feet and mossy hair, swimming near a friendly crab and a sunken ship. As "water," he's an amorphous blue blob with a face, filling a tub in which a little girl floats a rubber duck. As "needles," he's a cactus who just happens to be the best soccer goalie ever. As "twigs and leaves," he's a heavily populated tree, with an owl family, a turkey, all manner of singing birds, and others nesting in him. As "feathers," he can run and jump but, wingless, not quite manage to fly. Other flights of imagination find the boy made of fluffy stuff, soapy suds, candy, cobwebs, flowers, and metal. Best of all, when he imagines himself as himself (that is, made of "skin and bones"), the amount of amazing things he can do makes him feel “quite content and lucky to be ME!” A helpful addendum called "Next Steps" offers teachers a handful of follow-up activities. The crisp, apt verse leaves ample room for Merz's rib-tickling cartoonlike illustrations, done in bright colors. While the narrator is Caucasian, other humans depicted demonstrate a nice variety of diversity.
Lively, entertaining, and educational to boot. (Picture book. 3-6)