Monday, August 6, 2012
Happiness is...a good book (Summer Reading edition #31)
Author and Illustrator: Jeff Mack
Age Range: 3-6
Cover Score: ***
Overall Score: ***
First Sentence: Hi!
*Warning* Those who are truly tender hearted may not appreciate it!
Hi. Hi. I am Fly. I am Frog. Nice to meet you. Nice to eet you? No. Nice to meet you? *slurp* No. Nice to eat you! This is the entire first story and they continue on in this vein, the unsuspecting fly meeting his demise at the end of each story but the last where there is a great little twist. Obviously it’s got a bit darker humor but as a fly reappears at the beginning of each (older readers will likely realize that it’s not actually the same fly) the gravity of the situation for that poor character isn’t as chilling as it could be.
It’s a larger-sized picture book format yet done in panels and with super simple text that’s easily adaptable for a read-aloud or a beginning reader. Each of the short stories is five pages long with about 25 or so words of dialogue. The panels teach top to bottom story progression, the speech bubbles highlight dialogue, and the short rhyming text is decipherable and predictable (though still clever and surprising.) The pen and ink illustrations employ bold outlines and bright colors and the large font is easy to read.
This is another of those books that crosses over between beginning readers/graphic novels/picture books, making it great, silly fun for a range of readers.