Go Canada!

Can I just say God bless the library?  If this is socialism, it’s working!  Thank you, Ben Franklin for getting the public library concept going.

    My five-and-a-half-year-old’s two favorite picture books of recent weeks are straight from the library:  Small Saul by Ashley Spires and Sir Reginald’s Logbook by Matt Hammill.  For some reason, they’re both Canadian books.

First Small Saul:  it’s a simple, satisfying tale of shrimpy Saul, a polite and fastidious lad who’s too short for the navy.  His only ticket to his dream of a life on the high seas is piracy.  But can  a guy who carries breath mints and wears a bunny tattoo make it as a pirate?  Spires’ illustrations are full of fun details.  My son and I got lots of chuckles from this one.

Sir Reginald’s Logbook is about an intrepid explorer who looks like a distinguished English gentleman (see C. Aubrey Smith in the film classic The Four Feathers).  The cartoonish pictures in ink, watercolor and pastel show him in a terrifying jungle environment.  But soon we glean from the smaller, black-and-white ink drawings that  Sir Reginald is really on his bed at home.  And that bazooka gun is really a plunger!  We go with him as he tries to recover the mysterious Lost Tablet of Illusion.  After Reginald gets a vampire bat landing on his head, we find out on the next page that it’s just a pair of pants stuck on his head.  And I won’t even tell you what we really find out about the enormous Bright-Eyed Baboon.  Suffice it to say this book gave me big laughs.  The resolution is ingenious.

Go Canada!


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Filed under Age: Early Elementary, Age: Preschool, Fiction, Picture Books, Reviews

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