cover image You're a Hero, Daley B.!

You're a Hero, Daley B.!

Jon Blake. Candlewick Press (MA), $13.95 (32pp) ISBN 978-1-56402-078-9

This comic debut stars an utterly endearing animal with long ears, a U-shaped nose, brown fur and big hind feet. His name is Daley B., and he is obviously a rabbit--though this fact somehow eludes him. He imagines himself as a porcupine, as a bat in a cave and even as a bird poised to devour a gooey worm. Finally, he decides to behave like a squirrel, and it isn't until he's about to become dinner for a weasel--which he mistakenly identifies as a duck-billed platypus--that he catches on to his true identity. With its three distinguishing voices--a narrator's, Daley B.'s and the sinister weasel's--Blake's lighthearted tale begs to be read aloud. Scheffler's playful illustrations of walleyed creatures from a koala bear to birds to bugs with human faces introduce various members of the animal kingdom to emphasize drolly how mixed up this dumb bunny really is. Both kids and their parents will laugh out loud at the book's closing line--a real vaudeville-style zinger. Together, the farcical story and expressive cartoons acquaint readers with a stubbornly nonplussed hero who needs a good pair of glasses or, at the very least, a mirror. Ages 3-up. (Sept.)