cover image May I Have a Word?

May I Have a Word?

Caron Levis, illus. by Andy Rash. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, $16.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-374-34880-9

This clever story unfolds on a bright blue kitchen refrigerator covered with colorful magnetic letters. A tiff erupts between K and C. “I wish you’d quit stealing my sound,” says K. “Your sound?” replies C. Things escalate, and the other letters, which Rash (Archie the Daredevil Penguin) deftly anthropomorphizes with googly eyes and a few black lines, are at wit’s end: how will they spell socks or get ducks to quack? “The world would be quite out of luck,” writes Levis (Ida, Always) as L and U sink despondently to the bottom of the fridge. But all K needs is a little ego boost (N generously lets K feature prominently in a story in the making “about a knight who kept getting knots in his knitting), and before long C and K are sticking together once again. Breezy and boldly visual, it will have children looking at the letters on their own refrigerators with new respect—and it should provide teachers with inspiration for classroom activities, too. Ages 4– 8. [em]Author’s agent: Emily Mitchell, Wernick & Pratt. (May) [/em]