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NIT-PICKIN’ by Nancy van Laan

NIT-PICKIN’

By Nancy van Laan (Author) , George Booth (Illustrator)

Age Range: 6 - 8

Pub Date: July 1st, 2008
ISBN: 978-0-689-83898-9
Publisher: Atheneum

Though perhaps not particularly amusing to children (or their parents) who have actually battled the little scalp-suckers, this bouncy-jouncy plaint at least attempts to put a comical spin on the experience. “I was scritcha-scratchin’ / while a batch-a bugs / was hatchin’, / yes, those cooties were / attachin’ to my head,” moans the red-haired young narrator. Unfortunately, everyone in her extended family has a remedy—from Gramma’s mayonnaise cure to Mama’s plastic wrap, from Gramps’s kerosene concoction to (at last) the dog’s tube of special shampoo. Above the cartoon scenes of bedraggled country characters stomping ferociously about, Booth runs a thin continuous strip showing little bugs parachuting down to a seemingly forested cranial landscape, hatching in droves in a “nit picknic area” and wading through various sorts of gloop. Closing with a view of a nit graveyard thick with tombstones bearing legends like “Here lies Itty-Bitty Nitty, Jr.”, this kneeslapper makes a suitable alternative where Miriam Moss’s Scritch Scratch (2001) has already been picked out. (Picture book. 6-8)