A messy boy comes to a compromise after a school day spent trying to tame his unruly head of hair.
Aidan’s brown hair is wild and unkempt; the greasy mop has a mind of its own. At school, Aidan’s hair takes over by tying itself into bows, then reaching out to grab paintbrushes and splatter paint everywhere. At recess it creates havoc by grabbing other students with its octopuslike tentacles and yanking them into a mud puddle. Via the bathroom mirror, the exasperated and exhausted Aidan has a tête-à-tête with his hair. In response to his frustrated pleas, it offers a selection of possible styles. Most importantly, it wants hygiene, a few tendrils twining themselves into a cursive “WASH ME.” Aidan agrees to wash his hair on weeknights but will revert to his happy, grubby self on weekends. Bright illustrations depict humorous, fantastically disruptive school scenes centered on the gap-toothed and mostly good-natured white boy’s sloppy appearance and his out-of-control mane. Aidan’s ultimate understanding of simple personal hygiene allows for a plausible solution to make his school day go smoothly. As with many lesson books, it seems to have so much fun with its out-of-control premise that the relatively tidy Aidan standing at the bus stop the next morning feels like a letdown. Readers who notice his untied shoelaces will see that yet more taming is in the offing.
Fun if didactic. (Picture book. 5-8)