Friday, September 5, 2008

The Pencil

Allan Ahlbert, Illustrations by Bruce Ingman

Candlewick Press

This is a definite winner from the team that created The Runaway Dinner. The combination of humorous text, quirky drawn out writing style, and clever illustrations all point to another runaway hit! Many of the same characters reappear from the first book, which is extra fun for the readers.

Once there was a pencil, who loved to draw. He sketches wonderful things - a boy and a dog, a cat for the dog to chase, a house, a family for the little boy and even an entire town. He even draws a paintbrush to make his drawings rich with color. And is everyone happy? No! The pencil is overrun with complaints and must draw an eraser to clean things up.

The eraser starts rubbing away and everyone seems satisfied. Yet rather suddenly he gets too excited and starts erasing all sorts of extra things. Poof! The house and town are gone. The pencil must quickly come up with a plan to stop this eraser and save his own skin, er, graphite.

What a wonderfully imaginative story this is. It's a fun read that will have readers rushing through the pages to find out who will prevail in the end. Whimsical illustrations and a quick wit make the entire book fly by far too quickly.

For a great gift, pair with . . .

Nils and Neles Note Box from Oompa Toys. This charming set makes a great addition to any child's desk. Colorful and sturdy, it holds up to 500 sheets of 3 1/2 x 3 1/2 note paper. Three colored pencils fit perfectly into their respective repositories and are nicely topped by smiling Nils and Neles. $16.99


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