What Would I Do? An A to Z Journey

Maurice M. Hebert, illus. by Megan Tennant. Mograce, $10.95 paper (60p) ISBN 978-0-9983319-0-4
In his first book for children, Hebert presents an alphabetical series of what-if scenarios featuring various adult professionals, from an astronaut to a zookeeper. It’s a solid starting place, but most scenes don’t present intriguing dilemmas for younger readers. Would a “Fireman working the ladder” do anything but rescue a cat “clinging [to] the edge of a banner”? Would a painter creating a picture that features the “beauty and splendor/ of a new shopping center” actually attract the crowd she does? These and many of the other setups are constructed, somewhat tortuously, around Hebert’s verse, which doesn’t concern itself much with rhyme, meter, or consistency (“What would I do? If I were a Golfer/ Swinging much better and harder than ever/ My ball landing on top of the hole of a gopher/ What would I do?”). Tennant’s accompanying artwork, which seems to channel cartoonists like Charles Schulz and Harry Bliss, is more successful; her skillfully drafted images bring welcome humor to scenes of a magician’s kitchen overrun with rabbits, candy-deprived children on a seaside boardwalk, and zoo animals run amok. Ages 4–8. (BookLife)
Reviewed on: 06/05/2017
Genre: Children's
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