DON'T GO THERE! by Jeanne Willis


by ; illustrated by
Age Range: 1 - 3
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Can a human preschooler teach a baby alien how to use the potty?

The narrator, who wears a jumper and tights, is charmed by a baby alien from another planet—until noticing he doesn’t know “how to use the loo!” After he pees on the narrator’s easel and then poos in a birdbath outside, the child brings him into the bathroom to show him the toilet. He’s resistant, and so begins a lengthy interlude in which he resists all entreaties to use the potty and instead tries to go in various other places. Bragadottir’s cartoon art exploits every opportunity for laughs as the small, green, froglike alien crouches over a cowboy hat, a trash can, and a fishbowl. The last instance results in a mess, though the narrator saves the fish. Determined child then marches the alien back to the bathroom and teaches him a potty song: “Lid up, pants down, / bottom on the seat. / Sit still, just chill, / until the job’s complete. / Whistle if you want to. / Singing can be fun. / Wipe, flush, wash hands, / then you’re done!” In a humorous aside, the alien flubs the song when he tries to sing it, but eventually he succeeds in using the potty. As he returns to his departing spaceship, the narrator turns his success around to readers, assuring them, “If he can use the potty, you can too!” The narrator presents white; judging by the alien’s posture, his alimentary system and its termini are analogous to humans’.

A spacey twist on the potty book. (Picture book. 1-3)

Pub Date: March 5th, 2019
ISBN: 978-1-5415-5508-2
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Andersen Press USA
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15th, 2019


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