Some Funny Stuff for You

Never lose faith in yourself or lose your ability to laugh at yourself or the world around you. After having hit you with two weeks of more serious books, I thought we’d all enjoy some more on the lighthearted side.  Happy Groundhog Day. I hope you’re bracing for 6 more months of winter weather. Though, here in Coastal North Carolina, I do hope no more snow or ice. Stay safe where ever you are. And laugh a lot.

Arnold is good with the phone. Well somebody should be!

Each of us has some kind of superpower, even we don’t think we’re anything but ordinary. For instance, there’s Arnold. I’ve grown rather fond of him.

Arnold the Super-ish Hero

Heather Tekavec

Illustrated by Guillaume Perreault

Most people feel inadequate in some way or another, but all are superheroes in their own way. Perhaps one could feel sorry or embarrassed for Arnold, who comes from a family of superheroes since he doesn’t seem to have a single extraordinary skill. He can’t lift very heavy objects like a firetruck, let alone with just one finger. Nor can he fly at lightning speed or bounce high enough to leap over tall buildings. Arnold, however, is quite good at answering the phone. But one day when the phone rings, nobody else can come to the rescue. It is up to Arnold to save the day and the city and the people. And in his small, ordinary way, he does just that. The moral of this charming story is that we all have superhero talents, even if it doesn’t seem that way. The illustrations are perfect for the story and perfect for any superhero. Teachers will be able to encourage all their students to have confidence in themselves.

BIBLIO: 2021, Kids Can Press, Ages 6 to 8, $17.99.

REVIEWER: Sarah Maury Swan

FORMAT: Picture Book

ISBN: 978-1-5253-0309-8

Bunny and his food

What kid hasn’t played with the food? Have you ever watched the “Christmas Story” about Raphie’s time of wanting a bb gun? And how his younger brother, Randy, won’t eat his dinner until his mother lets him play with it. That scene of the boy with mashed potatoes all over his face and in his hair and on his bib is hilarious.

Bunny! Don’t Play with Your Food.

Paul Schmid

Illustrated by Paul Schmid

Children and the grown-ups will find this book amusing. The children because they’ll see they’re not the only ones who play with their food and have great imaginations. Grown-ups will smile affectionately because the book will remind them of their bunnies. The bunny in question makes his carrot snack into a Bunnysaur and eats the green stuff at the top as a dinosaur might. As a tiger might, this bunny can attack a tasty “Carrotpotomus,” or defeat the evil space beings in the Carrotship or be the zombie bunny, that is until Mom orders him to just eat his food and not play with it. Bunny, of course, says he is eating. He’s just having a bit of fun while he does eat. The story would most likely encourage even the pickiest of eaters to try a new food if allowed to use his/her imagination while doing so. The illustrations are whimsical and cute. Parents could use this book to discuss how food can be fun.

BIBLIO: 2021, Andrew McMeel Publishing/Andrew McMeel Universal, Ages 3 to 5, $8.99.

REVIEWER: Sarah Maury Swan

FORMAT: Board Book

ISBN: 978-1-5248-6469-9

Even an elephant might forget a thing or two.

I used to have an excellent memory. My husband says he relies on me to be his “cloud,” but of late I’m warning him that his cloud is dissipating.

Edmund the Elephant Who Forgot

Kate Dalgleish

Illustrated by Isobel Lundie

The embarrassment of it all! Elephants are supposed to remember everything, right? Not Edmund. His mother encourages him to sing her special song so he won’t forget and then she sends him off to collect the supplies for his brother’s birthday party. He’s sure he’ll get everything she told him to get because he’ll sing the song she taught him. Do you think it helps? Do you think he remembers everything? Follow along in the book and see what happens. Even though his friend Colin the Cricket tries to help Edmund, things do not turn out as planned. The young elephant proudly marches off pulling his little yellow wagon sure he’s going to get everything his mother told him to, but when he reaches for his list, he discovers he’s left it at home. That’s alright, he’ll just sing the song and then he’ll remember. His brother ends up with a very unique birthday party. The reader should try to spot Colin in each picture. Teachers can use the book as a way to teach young children tricks for how to remember things. The illustrations are sweet and whimsical.

BIBLIO: 2021, Scribblers/Salariya, Ages 3 to 6, $16.95.

REVIEWER: Sarah Maury Swan

FORMAT: Picture Book

ISBN: 978-1-913337-39-1

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Happy Groundhog Day. I hope you’re bracing for 6 more weeks of winter weather. Though, here in Coastal North Carolina, I do hope no more snow or ice. Stay safe where ever you are. And laugh a lot.