After a few summer weeks off from posting, September arrives like a monkey and finds my new book reviewed in The School Library Journal! If you don’t subscribe to that magazine (or only read it for the pictures) you can read the review below. Or not. But…you’re already here and have invested THIS much time in my blog…

BUT! Cover

HAMILTON, Tim. But! illus. by Tim Hamilton. 32p. Holiday House. 2014. RTE $16.95. ISBN 9780823430468; ebk. $16.95. ISBN 9780823432172.

K-Gr 2–By the rickety, ramshackle houses of Halibut Bay, pelicans hug themselves for warmth. Actually, so do cats, mice, and all humans, for everyone in Halibut Bay has a cold head, as hats are hard to come by. Eddie and his dog Phil have been given the unenviable task of taking care of his Aunt Sue during her recovery from a broken leg, and the two sail forth with a strong headwind into the cold, keeping an eye out for pirates. Eddie first struggles with the loss of his fishing day, then gamely attempts to complete Aunt Sue’s extensive list of chores, highlighted in a background of zany perspective and detail—from the top of three stories looking down, inside a darkened room looking out, and as viewed through curved lens. Among the items on the scrolled to-do list are the instructions to throw a birthday party for Sue’s pirate friend, Captain Rugbeard—and “get him a good present.” Eddie’s initial choice appears to be a disaster until quick thinking not only gives the Captain what he needs but also appears to be a solution for a common problem of every hatless resident. This title has much to engage readers: frequent page-ending pauses of the title conjunction “but”; humorous plot twists; quirky, cartoon characterizations; and friendly, neighborhood pirates. An entertaining addition.–Mary Elam, Learning Media Services, Plano ISD, TX

 

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