cover image Danny, Who Fell in a Hole

Danny, Who Fell in a Hole

Cary Fagan, illus. by Milan Pavlovic. Groundwood (PGW, dist.), $14.95 (96p) ISBN 978-1-55498-311-7

When Danny’s parents announce their plans to split up the family so they can follow their own artistic dreams, Danny is horrified (his father wants to sing opera in New York City, and his mother intends to bake cheesecakes in Banff, Canada). Even worse, they have given away Danny’s beloved dog, Thwack. In a fit of fury, Danny races out of the house and falls into a deep hole at a construction site. He makes clever use of the items in his backpack to get through the next few days, and befriends a wisecracking mole who not only speaks but also composes poetry (“Dark, dark, O glorious dark!/ Bathe me in blackness, ooohoo ohooo!”). Fagan (The Boy in the Box) has fun casting Danny as an outsider in a family of artistes (“Sunsets are cliché,” huffs Danny’s ukulele-playing older brother after Danny cites a school drawing as an example of his own creativity). Pavlovic’s cartoon spot illustrations are a good fit for this funny and sweet tale about learning to embrace change and appreciating what one has. Ages 8–12. (Apr.)