While Mom’s away, Dad and the kids will play.
Following reminders not to pick their noses or play ball in the house, hardly is Mom out the door before the narrator, his sister, and Dad pull out industrial quantities of green goo, shape it into a massive ball, break a vase (“ ‘She’ll kill us,’ Dad shrieked”) and—uh oh, there it goes out the window. “ ‘It’s heading to town,’ I yelled. ‘Quick, get your bikes.’ / But our slippery snot-rocket was leaving our sight.” Having picked up pets, underwear, and miscellaneous litter on its way, the giga-greenie reaches town, where Mom (of course) is waiting to swat it into outer space with a big stick. She gets a Booger Blaster medal, and all is forgiven. Young audiences might forgive Richtel’s cavalier attitude toward rhyme and regular metrics, but after a promisingly icky prefatory table of booger types, Wildish turns in a lackluster loogie that looks more like papier-mâché or a boulder-sized, oddly colored meatball than anything truly worth gagging at. And do readers really need yet another doofus dad? A “postman” and two other figures are brown-skinned in an otherwise all-white cast.
Gourmets of all things gross will sniff at this. (Picture book. 6-8)