THE CONTEST by Ethan Long


From the "Scribbles and Ink" series
by ; illustrated by
Age Range: 5 - 8
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Scribbles and Ink fumble a contest entry, with amusing results.

Scribbles, a cat with scribble-style fur, and Ink, a mouse with clean edges that sometimes drip ink, aspire to win a competition—“Draw a Dino! Win a Prize!”—so they can go to Mudsplash Mountain, the muddiest place on Earth. Scribbles takes a big blue pencil and draws something with sharp teeth and a pointy tail, but, oh dear: “Behold its bony thighs and feathery body!” says Ink, naming it a “chick-a-saurus.” Ink, gripping a paintbrush twice his height, approaches the task conceptually, painting an egg’s red outline. Suddenly, it cracks, and a roundish, vaguely dino-ish monster emerges, querying “Mommy?” of both artists (a cheerfully postmodern nod to P.D. Eastman’s Are You My Mother?). “Nope. Sorry, dude,” says Scribbles. The outsized baby monster finds its mother—whose identity is hilarious—and Scribbles and Ink get a surprising mud frolic without reaching Mudsplash Mountain. Three hue sets and visual styles work well together: the mobile, black bodies of Scribbles and Ink themselves, the casual blue and red lines of their simple artwork, and the gleamingly realistic detail of their pencil and paintbrush. The pages are slightly cramped, given all the motion, but then again, Long’s playing with cartoon conventions and frame breaks.

A giggle-inducing romp about making mud while the sun shines. (Picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 13th, 2013
ISBN: 978-1-60905-351-2
Page count: 72pp
Publisher: Blue Apple
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15th, 2013


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