cover image Handy Hank Will Fix It

Handy Hank Will Fix It

Anne F. Rockwell. Henry Holt & Company, $13.95 (30pp) ISBN 978-0-8050-0697-1

Handy Hank is a fix-it man, and he clearly loves his work. On this particular day, Hank repairs a chimney flue, a kitchen sink, a broken window, a door and a ceiling. A friendly doctor-client attends to Hank's sore shoulder, and on the way home Hank helps a man whose battery has run down. This initially appears to be a picture book, but the simple plot (a day in the life of a handyman) is overwhelmed by the length and density of the text, which is packed with how-to details. Rockwell's usual bright, boldly lined illustrations are often crowded (comic strip-like) onto pages in order to illustrate the complex repairs performed by Handy Hank. While this is an interesting concept, it misses in the execution, working neither as a picture book nor as a short, easy-to-read how-to. Ages 6-8. (September)