Kirkus Reviews QR Code
JAZZ FLY 2 by Matthew Gollub

JAZZ FLY 2

The Jungle Pachanga

By Matthew Gollub (Author) , Karen Hanke (Illustrator)

Age Range: 5 - 8

Pub Date: June 1st, 2010
ISBN: 978-1-889910-44-4
Publisher: Tortuga Press

Jazz Fly and his band are back (The Jazz Fly, 2000) for a bilingual adventure: a tropical-rainforest gig plus car trouble. Using his “Jazz-Spanish” phrase book, he enlists a sleepy sloth, a hyperactive monkey and an obliging macaw, alighting at the Termite Nook in time. His quartet’s grooves are interrupted dramatically when an anteater literally crashes the party. A message—a second language enriches life—is overplayed, but the cross-cultural interplay of scat and Latin rhythms wins out. A funkified layer of elementary science, delivered winkingly, adds a soupçon of cool. “On till dawn, the two bands played. Larvae danced. A thousand eggs were laid.” The accompanying CD is positively integral: Gollub’s band’s Latin jazz arrangements are—unusual for children’s music—actually tight. The narration’s occasionally shrill, but Gollub’s iteration of the chorus (“CHOO-ka CHOO-ka TING. ¡Ay, caramba! ¿Cómo cómo llego a la CHOO-ka pachanga?”) is required hearing for anyone aspiring to read this text aloud (which is a must). Hanke supplies breezy, computer-enhanced illustrations, delivering swarming details from diaphanous wings to pools of ambient lighting to bug eyes extraordinaire. ¡Qué bueno! (author’s note) (Picture book/CD. 5-8)