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CHICKEN BUTT! by Erica S. Perl


by Erica S. Perl & illustrated by Henry Cole

Age Range: 3 - 6

Pub Date: April 1st, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-8109-8325-0
Publisher: Abrams

On one hand, this is an utter goofball of a book, an unhinged piece of slap-happy rhyming. On the other, it is a challenge to engage. It depends on the reader’s mood. If that mood is like the father here—preoccupied, disconnected, maybe a bit grumpy—it could probably use this type of elevation. “You know what?” asks a boy. “What?” says his dad, slouching behind the newspaper. “CHICKEN BUTT!” hollers the boy, which gets his dad’s attention. “You know why?” “Why?” “CHICKEN THIGH!” Off the book goes, very merrily energetic, served on a plate of Cole’s rocket-propelled artwork (which features gleeful close-ups of the chicken anatomy in question). Read as a duet, the romp is a powerful piece of cacophony, more frenetic by the moment, which the book’s targeted age group will allow for only at the upper end—so some rapid voice-flipping will be necessary. Then again, if an adult reader’s mood is already fine, this über-farce may send that adult, like this book’s dad, round the bend, where a drink should be waiting. (Picture book. 3-6)