cover image Good Zap, Little Grog!

Good Zap, Little Grog!

Sarah Wilson. Candlewick Press (MA), $15.95 (32pp) ISBN 978-1-56402-286-8

Do children on other planets keep to the same daily rituals that Earthlings follow? Wilson (Christmas Cowboy; Garage Song) suggests that some behavior is truly universal in this winsome fantasy, the title of which translates as ``good night'' in a world of Grogs. But that phrase doesn't occur until the conclusion; the gentle rhymes begin with sunrise (``Zoodle oop, little Grog,/ give a hug; stretch and yawn./ The night moons are fading./ There's shine on the lawn''). The little Grog looks just like a human boy--although his pets are ``ooglets'' and a ``giant chiwanga'' (something like a blue brontosaurus) peeks in the door of his igloo-like abode. Meddaugh (Martha Speaks) imagines an extraterrestrial, primitive land, placing three pink moons in its sky. Her watercolor-and-ink flying ``zoofs'' and mouse-tailed ``froozels'' flesh out the neologist's nonsense menagerie, and a two-page ``Grog Guide'' lets readers identify all the freaky fauna. It's brillig, yet mimsey at the same time. Ages 3-up. (Sept.)