From School Library Journal
Grade 4-6 --In a nifty twist on Kafka, a la Metamorphosis , this "popular young-adult author" asks readers to imagine the revulsion a cockroach might feel at having been suddenly transmuted into a boy. She introduces Shoebag (named for his birthplace), erstwhile insect-son of Drainboard and Under The Toaster. Adopted by the Biddles (in whose house he has always been a resident, however undesirable), renamed Stuart Bagg, poor Shoebag confronts the unknown worlds of humanity and school. Although now large enough to exterminate roach predators that prey on his extended family, Shoebag discovers his new incarnation carries no killer mentality. He bands together with other social outcasts in the cafeteria, and soon their mutual need becomes their collective strength. Shoebag learns that being human has advantages, but he still longs for the form he sees in the mirror--his real self. Still, friendships with others are rewarding and a growing relationship with his human sister, Eunice "Pretty Soft" Biddle--the protected, isolated, insulated star of toilet tissue commercials--is enlightening to them both. When given a chance to return to roachdom, Shoebag assumes cerci and antennae with scarcely a look back, scampering off to the figurative bosom of his family. His departure leaves Pretty Soft discovering herself to be Eunice at last, sure of her image without benefit of mirrors, ready to face reality. Unusual (to say the least), amusing, engaging, and gripping, Shoebag has its lessons carefully hidden in its rather unique plot, and will surely leave its readers surreptitiously cancelling parental appointments with the exterminator and carefully hiding tidbits in inconspicuous corners for the benefit of Shoebag's extended clan. A romp. --Patricia Manning, Eastchester Public Library, NY
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.