A wordy, rambling story with an arbitrary conclusion.
Sadly, the clever and humorous endpapers are easily the best part of this “Jack and the Beanstalk”–esque story. When Andrea comes home with a box of holes she bought, her practical mother is not amused. Undaunted, Andrea retreats to her room, takes out a hole, and a mouse—who says he works for the tooth fairy, though why this information is pertinent is never shared—immediately appears. He demands the hole, claiming it’s missing from his cheese. For each hole, another character pops up, and while a few are clearly related to items in Andrea’s room, most are entirely haphazard. Each claims one of Andrea’s new holes is his or her own, missing from one bafflingly odd item after another. In an even more random-feeling turn of events, Andrea climbs into the last hole—which is apparently big enough for such an action—happening upon all the previously introduced characters and resulting in the recovery of her mother’s missing smile. Inconsistent art makes this already convoluted story even more confusing. More distressing, however, is the suggestion that a problem as serious as Andrea’s mother’s sadness and anger over her husband’s leaving can be instantly solved by magic.
Disappointing and odd. (Picture book. 5-9)