THAT'S NOT FUNNY!
Age Range: 3 - 6
Hyena gets a taste of his own mischievous medicine. Just for fun, he places a banana peel in Giraffe's path and, sure enough, Giraffe slips and skids into a tree. This knocks loose a coconut that falls right on Hippo's head. Hyena laughs uncontrollably, even as both Hippo and Giraffe cry, "That's not funny!" Hippo's dizziness sets off a chain reaction involving Snake, Ostrich, Rhino, Turtle, Vulture, Zebra, Cheetah, Wildebeest and, ultimately, Elephant. Through it all, Hyena laughs uproariously. He gets his just deserts, though, when he slips on the same banana peel and ends up in a steaming heap of elephant poo. When Hyena declares loudly that "It's not funny!" what do you think all the other animals do? Willis's text is nicely streamlined for maximum slapstick effect and much abetted by the clever compositions of Reynolds's illustrations. His brightly colored animals look soft and cuddly, like stuffed toys, but they move like classic Looney Tunes characters. Sure to trigger young listeners' laughter as well. (Picture book. 3-6)