I love puns. Frankly, I couldn’t have groan up in my family without loving them. So this book is write up my alley! Mr. Putney has a lot of animal friends, but you have to guess their names. The word play is a combination of illustrations and words with half of the joke coming from the text and half from the pictures. Some of the word play is easier than others, but all is amusing and some will have you laughing out loud. This book would be a stitch with a group of kids who enjoy reading and words. In fact, it would make a great basis of an art project or for a writing project to create their own puns.
Agee’s illustrations are in his signature style. Outlined in thick black lines, they are disarmingly simple and filled with a sly humor. An ideal companion to the book’s concept, they add appeal to the word play. Mr. Putney is a straight-laced character whose reactions are satisfying and funny as he deals with each of the unique animals in the book. There is a certain delight in seeing him doused, thrown into the air, or just shocked by a loud noise.
Get this into the hands of kids who love guessing games and word play. Or just into the hands of any punny folks you know. Appropriate for ages 5-8.
Reviewed from library copy.