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AMOS JELLYBEAN GETS IT RIGHT by Joanna Walsh

AMOS JELLYBEAN GETS IT RIGHT

By Joanna Walsh (Author) , Joanna Walsh (Illustrator)

Age Range: 4 - 8

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 2005
ISBN: 0-340-88222-0
Publisher: Hodder Children’s Books/Trafalgar

Amos Jellybean knows he’s bright (his mum says so), but he still always seems to scramble the many instructions he’s given: “So I . . . take my bed downstairs, put it on the table, sit down on my breakfast and eat my clothes.” Further communication breakdowns result in wearing his bag on his head, washing his rubber duck and ending up with a stomach-turning concoction (think pickled strudel) generated by a lunchtime bout of swapping. The mix-ups are fun and funny, but they start to wear thin towards the end. In addition, Walsh’s choppy, crazy collage artwork and design (reminiscent of Lauren Child’s) fail to maximize the humor of Amos’s rampant mangling of instructions—partly because the illustrations and layouts are so stylized it’s difficult to visualize the scenarios at hand. In the end, as the title foretells, Amos finally follows his commands to a T; he remembers to put on his pyjamas (British spellings abound), clean his teeth, choose a bedtime story and all—and the big, bold, full-page question mark that precedes the story is now an emphatic exclamation point as he proudly proclaims, “I did it!” (Picture book. 4-8)