cover image A Regular Flood of Mishap

A Regular Flood of Mishap

Tom Birdseye. Holiday House, $16.95 (1pp) ISBN 978-0-8234-1070-5

Six-year-old Ima Bean is ``just trying to help,'' but she instigates a series of homely disasters instead. To mend the fishing pole that she broke, she takes the string that's tightly wrapped around the barnyard gate, whereupon the mule busts loose and drags a clothesline of fresh laundry through mud, etc. After literally upsetting the proverbial applecart, Ima Bean runs home ``fleahop fast'' to pack her bags. Youngsters swept into their own floods of mishap may take solace in the forgiving ending--``you're always family . . . even when you goof!'' Birdseye's ( Soap! Soap! Don't Forget the Soap! ) plot devices are strained, and his often vivid mountain-folk lingo gets buried by laggardly pacing and awkward use of repetition. In her action-packed watercolor and ink illustrations, however, Lloyd ( The Gingerbread Man ) sympathetically conveys Hurricane Ima's frettersome frenzy. Ages 4-8. (Mar.)