James and Timothy and Stanley and Bert split up companionably into good guys and bad guys in their daily sorties to capture the hill, wind up spread-eagled (""They all lay dead"") and still friends. Then "One day" . . . Big Mike, a black-clad menace, and his scowling crew challenge them to fight for their right to the hill. Slinging stones and swinging clubs, they bloody and maul one another. . . until "They all lay hurting" and decide that "Nobody won. . . We all lost. . . Why don't we just use (the hill) together?" There'll be no more "real war" just "Bang, Bang, You're Dead." A terse text lets the intense, eruptive drawings carry most of the impact. Clutching their wounds, these kids might be Goya's Desastres de la Guerra scaled to size.
It's a bruiser that could be an eye-opener, could be a fright. . . you wouldn't want to hand it out wholesale.