December 16, 2008
Epossumondas Saves the Day
by Colleen Salley
illustrated by Janet Stevens
AR Level 3.3
Epossumondas is all set for the best birthday ever but Mama is all out of sody sallyraytus (baking soda to the uninitiated). That means no sweet biscuits for the strawberry shortcake unless someone goes to the store.
One by one, Baby Gator, Auntie and then Mama go to the store for sody sallyraytus. One by one, each one of them goes missing.
It’s up to Epossumondas to save his family and his birthday party.
Now, I have to admit. The first thing that grabbed me in this book was the sweet biscuits. Yum! I grew up eating sweet biscuit strawberry shortcake vs the mass-produced spongey things they sell at the market. How could I not love the family that eats much like my own?
Unfortunately, the fate that has befallen his family is a very hungry Louisiana Snapping Turtle.
Fortunately, it is a turtle that gulps his food without chewing.
Don’t be spooked at the idea of a family gobbled up. The story is every bit as silly as you would expect given the main character — a walkin’ talkin’ possum in diapers.
If you haven’t read the other Epossumundas books, don’t worry. Jump on in. The water’s fine. Not a single snapper in sight. Just lots of laughs.
December 5, 2008
Chester (AR 1.3)
by Melanie Watt
Kids Can Press
Talk to enough authors about their characters and you’re bound to hear from someone about a character who takes over the story, who simply won’t do what’s expected.
Watt seems to have had this problem with Chester, an outrageously immense calico who, marker in hand, alters her story on the page, changing it from a sweet little piece about a mouse to a story all about a wonderful cat named Chester. Watt doesn’t give up and soon the two are battling for dominance from page to page. Who has the last word? You’ll have to check out the back cover to find out.
If you love sweet characters and sweet stories, this may not be the book for you. My son and I choked with laughter. My husband? Not so much.
If you are the Mom or Grandpa or Auntie who teaches the kids camp songs, how to spit watermelon seeds or how to whistle with a blade of grass, pick up one or both of these books to share with the young marauder in your life.