In this first series entry, Bell flips the repetitive primer structure on its head and transforms it into a winning oddball comedy. With a limited vocabulary of around 120 words—exclusively presented through dialogue—the four-chapter story is a careful blend of verbal and visual humor. The comic-book format, with usually one to four panels per page, heightens the silly factor with well-placed punchlines. Bell’s highly expressive watercolor and ink cartoon illustrations set characters against sparse backgrounds…Fragrant fun for first readers.
The title says it all: this early reader comic by Newbery Honor author Bell features plenty of bonkers humor…Simple vocabulary packed with tension and humor keeps readers’ interest high.
It’s as silly as it sounds, just the way budding readers like it, and the word and sentence repetition are good for literacy development as well as remembering your manners. Boisterous art matches the situations with goofy figures in hyperbolic positions, and young readers will love seeing the danger coming before the characters do. A viable Elephant & Piggie alternative for slightly more advanced readers.
This easy reader’s panels and word bubbles provide comedic timing while parsing the text into digestible parts, which thoughtfully assists children new to both independent reading and the comics form. Bold outlines and exaggerated features in the watercolor and ink illustrations accentuate the playful absurdity of the narrative in this four-chapter comedy of errors.
—The Horn Book
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