cover image Ten Fat Sausages

Ten Fat Sausages

Michelle Robinson, illus. by Tor Freeman. Penguin Workshop, $10.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-5247-9329-6

“Ten fat sausages, sizzling in a pan” escape the stovetop for some short-lived freedom in this comedic twist on the predictable nursery rhyme. After the first wide-eyed sausage goes “POP,” revolt begins with sausage two, who interrupts the repeating rhyme: “Hang on a minute! I do not like this... I won’t go BANG and I won’t go POP,” Robinson writes. Instead, “hop, hop, hop,” he dives headfirst into the sink, but the carefree swim is cut short when someone pulls the plug, propelling him “straight down the drain.” His compatriots find that their luck isn’t much better: in Freeman’s colorful, vintage-style art, wiener four meets an unfortunate end in the blender (a nearby apple covers a grape’s eyes), sausage six heads “over the wide-open Freezer Top Ridge”—and straight into the ceiling fan—and sausage eight, grief stricken, catches the eye of a hungry cat (“Oh, drat”). Witnesses to their friends’ gruesome ends, the final two links hatch a different kind of plan, one that successfully results in the stove being switched off. “Might this pair survive?” asks the narrator; the conclusion to this slight, sausage-filled adventure will leave readers gulping. Ages 3–7. (Apr.)