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by Deanna Kizis ; illustrated by Sam Boughton

Pub Date: Jan. 12th, 2021
ISBN: 978-0-593-11681-4
Publisher: Philomel

A blue-green blob demonstrates that some rules are meant to be broken.

The blob looks like a round splatter of paint, with stick limbs and big eyes. “Oh, hi. I see you’ve opened this book,” it says in greeting. It warns that there are rules in the book. “You” must not do “any of the cool or awesome things” the rules say not to do “because then you’ll have WAY too much fun.” Listeners at just the right age may find this rib-ticklingly funny. The first rule is that a fart noise must not be made, with large letters to sound out the noise strewn colorfully across the two-page opening. While possibly a cheap chuckle, given the audience, it allows listeners to feel bold and enjoy some silly, supervised rule-breaking. The white background and creative use of text placement, size, and color keep the visual focus on the simple, instructive narrative. The blob demonstrates additional rules, becoming larger and more animated in its agitation as an unseen listener apparently breaks the following rules: do not make “the weirdest, silliest, most RE-DONK-A-DONK face you can,” or “tap your head and rub your belly at the same time,” or “hug yourself and yell I AM THE BEST,” or “turn to whoever else is in the room and say YOU’RE AWESOME, TOO!” And finally, “please do not ask to read this book again.” Good luck. (This book was reviewed digitally with 10-by-20-inch double-page spreads viewed at 30.3% of actual size.)

Slight, but inviting of energetic engagement and laughter.

(Picture book. 2-5)