Friday, March 2

Grumpy Bird

by Jeremy Tankard
Scholastic 2007

Everything it promises on first glance, and then some.

Bird wakes up grumpy. His face is priceless. He's too grumpy to fly, so he might as well walk.

He passes sheep. Sheep asks him what he's doing. Grumpy bird says he's walking. Sounds like fun to Sheep so he follows Grumpy Bird.

The same thing happens with Rabbit. And Raccoon. And Beaver. And Fox. Bird doesn't understand why everyone's asking him what he's doing; isn't it obvious?

But then he realizes he's being followed. He stops. He lifts his leg, they lift their legs. He's jumps, they jump. "Hey, this is fun!" Bird forgets he's grumpy. He suggests they all fly back to his nest for a snack. And they do, all of them, fly. And they all seem a bit apprehensive about the worm Bird has to offer them.

The end. And it probably took more words to describe than to read.

Tankard's bright colors, broad brush strokes and overlaid digital collage make this the brightest book you've ever seen. The simplicity of the animals is almost perfect, and Bird's grumpy face (the one inside, not the one on the cover, which is fairly tame) is a combination of a cranky toddler and a disheveled old uncle waking up from a nap -- which, come to think of it, may be the same look.

Everyone knows a Grumpy Bird, most of them are not children. Any of them with a sense of humor will love this. Most people with a sense of humor will love this. I loved this, and I can be pretty cranky myself.

1 comment:

jules said...

Looks great. Love the review. Another to add to my reading pile.

By the way, I'm about to post a review on The Story of Cherry the Pig, and it will probably be mostly about your review of it -- with a link to yours -- 'cause I remember reading yours and thinking, man, he nailed it, as in, why should I even bother reviewing now when I can just link to Elzey's nearly perfect, very detailed review? Hope that's okay with you!