cover image Guess Again!

Guess Again!

Mac Barnett, , illus. by Adam Rex. . S&S, $16.99 (32pp) ISBN 978-1-4169-5566-5

A funny, absurdist take on guessing game books from the team behind Billy Twitters and His Blue Whale Problem , these silly rhymes avoid easy answers (a robot who hatches from an egg and cries “Cheep Cheep!” on the first page hints at the brand of humor in store). Beside a black silhouette of what appears to be a rabbit, Barnett's opening entry encourages readers to give a traditional answer to a four-line stanza: “His floppy ears are long and funny./ Can you guess who? That's right! My.” But turning the page, readers see not a bunny, but “Grandpa Ned,” shown standing on his head, his floppy gray socks providing the rabbit's lopped ears. What seem to be white sheep on a mountaintop are actually abominable snow monsters, Grandpa Ned appears again in a tree like the Cheshire cat and a dragonlike shadow that terrifies a knight belongs to a dentist. The playful tone is enhanced by cutouts, flaps and a triple-page foldout, but knowing the answers to the amusing visual/linguistic jokes may limit the book's potential for rereadings. Still, readers should find this twisted good fun. Ages 4–8. (Sept.)