Nineteen short stories explore some enormously funny ideas.
Ideas are big and things are often more than they seem in each of these brief vignettes, which are divided like chapters. One story shows snails having anxious nightmares about going too fast; another has a mother who foils her children’s bedtime games with her ability to see through ceilings; and still another explores the secret life of rabbits as they enjoy a whimsical subterranean wonderland. Although the diverse cast of characters seems to occasionally appear across multiple narratives, each of the stories is separate and self-contained, allowing readers to decide if and how the snapshot vignettes might be connected. Nearly all of the stories are paneled, employ speech bubbles, and are presented in sweeping double-page spreads, providing an early primer for readers working their way toward graphic novels, as the author’s frenetic, childlike illustrations and deceptively simple narratives each hit with a potent humor just this side of nonsense. Readers searching for an anchor of plot among the playful absurdity may find themselves a little disoriented, but fans of Louis Sachar’s Wayside School stories and Shel Silverstein’s repertoire of drawings will delight as this picture book joins their ranks.
Frivolity for surface amusement with a touch of poignancy for pondering. (Picture book. 3-7)