The Worm

Elise Gravel. Tundra, $12.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-77049-633-0
In one of two books kicking off the aptly (and wonderfully) named Disgusting Creatures series, Gravel (How Do You Doodle?) explores the long and short of worms, with a big emphasis on humor. A pink earthworm who is prone to shouting pops up repeatedly, at one point insisting, "I am not disgusting!" after Gravel describes his species as "basically a long digestive tract inside a muscle tube. It's that muscle tube that's slimy and disgusting." The boldly colored cartoons and handwritten display fonts make this a very appealing package, though the images can be at slight cross-purposes with the text (Gravel gives the friendly crew of worms eyes and smiley faces, even though readers learn halfway in that worms don't actually have eyes). But those idiosyncrasies in no way diminish the enjoyment of the book as Gravel tightrope-walks the line between gross and funny—as in a silhouetted image of a dog that shows two parasitic white worms sitting down to a meal in its belly. Says one, "Pass the salt, please!" Simultaneously available: The Fly. Ages 6–9. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 02/10/2014
Release date: 03/11/2014
Genre: Children's
Paperback - 32 pages - 978-1-101-91841-8
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