Charles B. Wombat and the Very Strange Thing

Wendy Elks, Author, Wendy Elks-Melki, Author Trafalgar Square Publishing $14.95 (32p) ISBN 978-0-09-168910-0
When a Very Strange Thing is found in the road outside Charles B. Wombat's gate, it attracts the attention of neighbors and passersby who blame Charles for its presence. He is no more enlightened than they are as to how the thing (a tortoise shell covered with travel stickers) arrived there, nor does he know its purpose. Then the tortoise pops his head out, toots a horn and three field mice emerge from the depths of the shell and offer their version of a traveling circus: clown show, parade and acrobatics. The crowd (and Charles) are enchanted, claiming the show the best they've ever seen, and the wombat is cheered for his part in bringing it all about. He bashfully accepts all thanks. Elks's watercolors are lively and well composed when she depicts animals, but lean more toward a stiff cartooniness when she tries people. The surprise of the circus works well; it is in these scenes that the storytelling is at its strongest. No ages given. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 02/27/1989
Release date: 03/01/1989
Genre: Children's
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