HERE'S WHAT YOU DO WHEN YOU CAN'T FIND YOUR SHOE (Ingenious Inventions for Pesky Problems)

Andrea Perry, Author, Alan Snow, Illustrator , illus. by Alan Snow. S&S/ Atheneum $16.95 (40p) ISBN 978-0-689-83067-9

Snow's (How Dogs Really Work!) Rube Goldberg–style drawings combined with spirited verse from newcomer Perry give this collection a rocket-powered burst of offbeat humor. A dozen essential inventions snort and clank almost audibly in the background as Perry describes them in sturdy verse. Each poem appears on a double-page spread, with the invention and its happy users festooning the margins. "The Sure-Footed Shoe Finder" locates lost shoes ("You won't miss the school bus! Now aren't you relieved?"); one can simply spray "Veggies Be Gone!," a "produce repellant," on a shopping basket, and "Its vapors prevent any artichoke heart/ or endive from lodging itself in your cart." A team of "Stink Stoppers" descends upon zoos to deodorize the animals ("Each creature's odor is pretty distinct,/ but we fight those fumes until all are ex-stinked") and "The Crumbunny," a brush-nosed, long-tongued pink creature with rabbit ears and a cottontail, snarfs up crumbs in untidy beds ("Have your cake and eat it, too!"). Perry's doggerel switches meters for variety, but stays steady within each, and the rhymes bounce along. Children will embrace these sweetly subversive verses, and so, despite themselves, will their parents. Ages 4-8. (Mar.)

Reviewed on: 12/23/2002
Release date: 03/01/2003
Genre: Children's
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