Mr. Nogginbody learns that no matter how nail-shaped a problem may appear, a hammer isn’t always the solution.
Starring in this absurdist adaptation of the adage about hammer and nails is daft Mr. Nogginbody. Proud of his initial success hammering a nail into his floor, Mr. Nogginbody decides to similarly remedy more problems, comically whacking naillike objects—showerheads, flowers, and (thankfully speedy) prairie dogs. After taking careful aim at a fly but hitting his own hat, he is struck with the epiphany that “not everything is a nail” and sweetly begins making amends, beginning with a new tool—a watering can to tend the flowers he crushed. Both the eponymous star of Shannon’s earlier David books and Mr. Nogginbody are kindhearted despite their predilection for chaos, and they exude a certain manic energy through their eccentric looks. Mr. Nogginbody appears to be a giant, egg-shaped head but is proportioned as though he were typically human: A tie is his nose, his arms swing askew, and a hat sits jauntily, if jarringly, just where the lapels of his shirt meet. Shannon’s signature breezy lines, keen sense of when to zoom in on a face or emphasize a zany moment, swaths of bright color among mostly black-and-white sketches, and casually uneven, hand-lettering keep it looking and feeling bright.
A novel hero and a novel way to introduce a new generation to an old saying. (Picture book. 4-6)