cover image A Job for Wittilda: 0

A Job for Wittilda: 0

Caralyn Buehner, Mark Buehner. Dial Books, $15.99 (32pp) ISBN 978-0-8037-1149-5

This wacky picture book supports the theory that it often takes some trial and error to locate just the right type of employment--even if you're a witch. When Wittilda--who is fond of spiders, batwing stew and roast newt--finds her kitchen cupboard bare, she realizes that she must get a job in order to feed her 47 cats. A stint at Aunt Bort's Hair Palace doesn't pan out, but an advertisement for a pizza delivery person holds promise. Wittilda puts her brooming skills to good use and after a snag or two she lands the position. Caralyn Buehner's ( The Escape of Marvin the Ape ) creation of a witch with a heart of gold gives her story a comforting tone, while equal dashes of adventure, magic and reality prove a captivating mix. Mark Buehner's (illustrator of The Adventures of Taxi Dog ) sumptuous oil and acrylic paintings exhibit his flair for depicting the play of light and shadow, and for deploying a variety of arresting perspectives. Wittilda's kind smile, cat's-eye glasses and huge bulbous nose give her heaps of personality. Scenes showing bug-eyed felines scanning the want-ads and sitting around the table--napkins tied around necks--for a pizza meal are especially humorous. Ages 4-8. (Sept.)