The Penguin Quartet

Peter Arrhenius, Author, Ingela Peterson, Illustrator Carolrhoda Books $15.95 (28p) ISBN 978-1-57505-252-6
Left to mind the eggs while the penguin moms are on a fishing vacation, four bored penguin dads decide to pack up the eggs (in what look like bags for bowling balls) and head to New York to play some cool jazz. Despite never learning how to play any instruments, or even listening to jazz (they first hear it on the airplane en route to the States), Max, Herbie, Charlie and Miles are an instant smash. The high life--staying at the Waldorf Astoria, guzzling cod liver oil, appearing on the cover of Rolling Stone--comes to an end when the eggs start to hatch, and the quartet rushes back to the South Pole. This thoroughly silly tale from a Swedish team will amuse those who enjoy loose logic and ready wish-fulfillment. Peterson's illustrations are busy with amusing touches, like the stumpy quartet resting their bills on the hotel's front desk and wearing trendy clothes on what appears to be the David Letterman show. A spread of scrapbook snapshots adds a note of nostalgia to the caper. Ages 5-8. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 06/01/1998
Release date: 06/01/1998
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