I BEEN THERE by Northern J. & Carol Hall Calloway

I BEEN THERE

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KIRKUS REVIEW

The young mind-tripper featured here doesn't understand at first when his friend Tommy says that ""we"" have been to the moon, but then his friend explains all about astronauts (""Tommy sure likes to tell what he knows""), Sarajane says we need more girl ones and she'll be it--and so the unnamed little hero muses, ""Nobody black did it yet. But somebody will. Maybe me."" The rest is his fantasy about goin' there: ""And what if I saw a 19-foot-tall gorilla-bat comin' at me?"" He imagines grabbing an African spear, digging a trap, hiding in a cave. . . . ""But what if he found me? Only one thing to do then. I'd just look up and say, 'O.K., hey, baby, want to shoot a few hoops?'"" So they would, and ""I would beat him 72 to five."" It's a thin idea (""conceived"" by Calloway, who is Sesame Street's David), and McLean's synthetic color illustrations, which seem even thinner in the puffed-up (8 3/4 x 11fl) format, add neither life nor feeling. Still songwriter Hall's easy colloquial travelogue makes the would-be astronaut an agreeable companion for an optional side trip.

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1977
Publisher: Doubleday