WHAT’S SO SCARY? by John Stadler

WHAT’S SO SCARY?

by & illustrated by
Age Range: 6 - 8
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KIRKUS REVIEW

Stadler’s cartoonishly drawn characters escape both disaster and authorial control in this freewheeling romp. After newly-drawn Dog complains that he’s not only alone on his birthday, but in the wrong story (a stiff letter of complaint from the publisher is visible nearby—“This is not the book we agreed on!”) the obliging Author creates a confused herd of companions, then upsets the paint cans, sending all scrambling just ahead of a polychrome tsunami. A series of cliffhangers ensues, as the fugitives stampede over land and water, uttering comments like, “Is this If You Give A Moose A Muffin? I’m here for an audition,” “If we’re really animals, how come we can talk?,” and “Who dresses that guy?” while the Author, or at least his bottom half, is seen struggling along in pursuit. Reaching “The End” (of the scenery, that is), Dog at last takes matters into his own paws, grabbing a brush and painting himself and his buddies into an oversized bed so that they can snuggle down for the sleepover they’re supposed to be having. Readers who laughed at the contrary fairy-tale characters in Allan Ahlberg’s Bravest Bear Ever (2000) will be mightily amused by this too. And for another take on this concept, see Bruce Whatley’s Wait! No Paint (below). (Picture book. 6-8)

Pub Date: June 1st, 2001
ISBN: 0-531-30301-2
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Orchard
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1st, 2001




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