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Do four-year-olds need an oddball, absurdist, semisurreal, homemade comic book in their lives? Indie stalwart Kochalka (the Johnny Boo series) thinks so, and he may just convince you. Using his signature childlike figures collaged onto photographed backgrounds and with the faces of himself, his son, and his cat, the often-brilliant creator brings together a combat-armored feline and a spoon-wielding, three-year-old . . . monkey? Without ever quite managing to get along, they take on a whip-quick butterfly and a drooling, wormlike dragon. If it sounds as though it were hatched in Kochalka's backyard playing with his family, there's an excellent chance that's the case. But through Kochalka's guerilla, one-man-and-a-pen style of creation, it magically captures the exact sense of zaniness often discovered in such a playtime and found in some of the best TOON Book titles (Otto's Orange Day, 2008, springs to mind). Remarkably, it does this without losing coherence; and with huge panels and spare dialogue that will amuse kids and adults, it's also the rare graphic novel that makes an excellent read-aloud. Preschool-Grade 2. --Jesse Karp
One tough kitty, in armor, and his never-ending battle with dragons!Published 7 months ago by P. M. Bradshaw
We think it is hilarious, though my 2-year-old thinks the dragon is a little scary.Published 8 months ago by Wind Lothamer