Pity poor Blobfish, a bottom-dweller who goes without light, friends, and, forsooth, delicious treats. Time for a “DEEP–SEA PARTY!”
Blobfish is aptly named: he’s got a beezer like a potato, a red-lipsticked frown, a sickly pink pallor. Blobfish has the blues. But our protagonist has pluck. He shouts out that he’s throwing a “DEEP–SEA PARTY! BRING A TREAT TO SHARE!” The sound waves make it to the mermaids, who hear “Cheap, free party! Sling on a sheet to wear.” Yes, it’s a game of Telephone, and this telephone is broken. The dancers hear: “Be really arty! Swing your feet in the air!” The kids outside hear: “Be a smarty! Fling your UNDERWEAR!” Yeah, well, OK—underwear—but that underwear just happens to foil the attack by candy-seeking extraterrestrials in a flying saucer. Then everyone retraces the Telephone call until they find Blobfish, still down in the friendless, treatless dark…but nevermore. Caton keeps the spirited artwork in concatenation with the crazy pleasure of Paul’s chain of transformations. The participants are an entirely natural mix of black, brown, white, boy, girl, and lots of animals of indeterminate gender and ethnicity but great variety. The whole package feels nicely wrapped, the wrapping doesn’t try to get fancy, and the package isn’t too big or small. Pleasingly proportional.
Nicely crafted comedy—and the Blobfish gets his wish. (Picture book. 4-8)