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THE FROGS WORE RED SUSPENDERS by Jack Prelutsky Kirkus Star


by Jack Prelutsky & illustrated by Petra Mathers

Age Range: 5 - 10

Pub Date: March 1st, 2002
ISBN: 0-688-16719-5
Publisher: Greenwillow

The title sets the stage for this delightful pairing of Prelutsky’s (Awful Ogre’s Awful Day, 2001, etc.) amusing rhymes with Mathers’s (Dodo Gets Married, 2001, etc.) charming watercolor illustrations. Ranging from sweetly poignant to goofy nonsense, each of the 28 short poems about people and animals is devoted to a double-paged spread, providing ample space for the subtly whimsical pictures to add details to the rhymes and to enliven the meter with perfect piquancy and lilt. “Ten Brown Bears,” who gobble plates of pies and then march home, are shown with one bear green in the face. “There Was a Tiny Baker” is illustrated with minute pictures of a teeny man and his equally teeny dog, nearly lost in the great expanse of page. Many of the poems are attached to specific cities or locales from Texas to Winnemucca, e.g., “Peanut Peg and Peanut Pete” in Atlanta. The cleverness in both language and art is demonstrated in “Seven snails and seven snakes / swam around the five Great Lakes. / They took seven years to go / from Thunder Bay to Buffalo.” And the rhyme is illustrated as a swimming and diving meet. A brilliant match of talent that’s guaranteed to make a hit. (Poetry. 5-10)