cover image Planet Was

Planet Was

Amy Boesky. Joy Street Books, $14.95 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-316-10084-7

In witty rhymed couplets, this gifted writer makes her picture book debut with the tale of the Planet Was, whose king wears a sash advocating ``The Same Forever.'' Nothing ever changes on Was: ``Ask why and you'll be told Because! / That's just the way things work on Was.'' As portrayed in Westcott's fanciful, cartoony pictures, the rotund little monarch sits around all day, consuming vast quantities of fudge and lemonade, served by his yawning, bored servants. No one is more tired of all this sameness than the king's seven-year-old son, a miniature version of his father. One day, as the servants, the king and even the royal pooch are all taking their Royal Nap (a daily ritual that runs from 10 till 4), the rebellious son decides to make some long-overdue changes, turning Was into Is with uproarious consequences. This zany, imaginative fable makes an excellent case for the value of change--even in the most unexpected ways and places. Ages 4-8. (Sept.)