Big Elephant in the Room

The Big Elephant in the Room by Lane Smith

One donkey says to the other, “Can we talk about the big elephant in the room?”  The other donkey responds by trying to think of all of the things he may have done that are big problems.  Could it be the fact he ate all of the ice cream?  Could it be when he took the cool bike?  Could it be when he “fixed” the computer?  One after another these confessions of wrong-doing are mentioned without pause for breath.  Until finally, the other donkey says that it is none of those things.  He wants to talk about the blue elephant sitting in the room.

This vaudeville-style book is laugh-out-loud funny.  It captures the comedic timing perfectly and is great fun to read aloud at breakneck speed (with pauses for laughter of course.)  Smith’s donkeys are permanently frazzled and crumpled.  They are wildly silly and a great pair of opposite personalities.  Smith’s art is appropriately wild as well, lending just the right feel to the book.

Highly recommended for the slightly more sophisticated child who will enjoy the rather sly humor.  Appropriate for ages 5-8.

Reviewed from library copy.

Also reviewed by A Patchwork of Books, 4IQREAD, Where the Best Books Are, The Hungry Readers, Pink Me, and Best Book I Have Not Read.

Radiant Shadows – A Preview

Get a small taste of the next book in Melissa Marr’s series that started with Wicked Lovely.  Marr has the prologue and first chapter up on her blog.  You can also enter a contest to create a teaser or trailer for the new novel! 

Thanks to Bookshelves of Doom for the link.

Today I Will

Today I Will by Eileen and Jerry Spinelli

The Spinellis have created a book that offers a quote for each day of the year.  The quotes come from children’s literature and feature favorite books and stories that instantly create warm memories.  The quotes speak to a quality of life, a sense of connectedness, and an affirmation of self.  They are diverse, insightful and a lot of fun.  The book is meant to be read over the course of a year, one quote and its ensuing insight at a time.  But I loved opening it at random and enjoying returning to beloved reads.

The book does not become overly sweet because the tone remain firmly footed in reality.  Some of the entries do speak to larger issues while others are refreshingly mundane and tangible like calling a grandparent or not smoking. 

An ideal book for children who love to read, this could also be used in a classroom setting as journal prompts or makes a wonderful teacher gift for the holidays.  Appropriate for ages 8-12.

Reviewed from copy received from publisher.