LENNY AND MEL

Erik P. Kraft, Author . S&S $15 (64p) ISBN 978-0-689-84173-6

Kraft's (Chocolatina) spirited if uneven tale introduces impish twins who concoct their own zany holiday celebrations. In a chapter about Halloween, Lenny pastes candy wrappers all over himself and goes trick-or-treating as the floor of a movie theater, but a neighbor who misses these subtleties labels Lenny "Trash Day." The description of a New Year's Eve spent trying to stay awake to watch the ball drop in Times Square lacks zing. But readers will chuckle when the twins, tired of eating leftovers after Thanksgiving, stuff the remaining turkey under Mel's pillow so that the Leftover Fairy (who sails through the air in his gravy boat) will take it and leave them cash. On Christmas Eve, deciding that Santa is a vegetarian ("That way, the reindeer don't think he's going to eat them"), the two leave him a snack of a block of cheese decorated with lights and twigs from the tree, which Santa decides to use as a sled ornament. This light caper will hit third-graders' sense of humor dead on, but it's likely to tickle the funny bones of kids more apt to be found plotting a prank than reading a book. Kraft's deadpan cartoon-panel drawings, however, may well get even nonreaders in on the laughs. Ages 7-10. (Mar.)

Reviewed on: 01/21/2002
Release date: 03/01/2002
Paperback - 64 pages - 978-0-689-85891-8
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