From School Library Journal
Starred Review. PreSchool-Grade 2—With broad strokes and witty slapdashery, Proimos's light cartoon art and plotline carry some weighty themes. Readers are introduced to diminutive, cheerful Todd, his too-busy-for-quality-time parents, and his increasingly nurturing television set. "Todd loved his parents. But he had grown much closer to his TV." Only a few pages in, some adult readers will be shifting uncomfortably. The spread featuring Todd, his eyes unnaturally large and glazed over on one side, and the huge TV facing him on the other, won't ease their discomfort a whit. At this point, the author jumps into a hilariously exaggerated focal plot that manages to ease the tension and intensify the message. It all starts when neither parent is available to attend Todd's parent-teacher conference—and the TV volunteers. Amusing cartoon drawings in shades of gray, black, and persimmony-red against a white background and a satiric twist at the story's end further enhance this funny-scary cautionary tale. It's a hoot.—Susan Weitz, formerly at Spencer-Van Etten School District, Spencer, NY
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This cautionary picture book, though entertaining and meaningful on a child’s level, might be more directed at parents. When Todd’s folks are too busy to deal with him, which is just about always, they plop him in front of the TV. Soon, the affable appliance has taken over most parental duties—going to the parent-teacher conference (where it promises to cut down on Todd’s cartoon intake), tucking him in at night, playing catch, and even taking Todd on vacation. When the TV whispers to Todd that he is thinking of legally adopting him, Mom and Dad realize the gravity of the situation, but it isn’t until Todd shows them that things can be turned off that they figure out what to do. A double-page moral to the story has the family enjoying quality time together, with Todd feeling more loved than ever and winning the Student of the Year Award. Proimos’ loose, comic art and plenty of humorous touches make for a fun read, and although TV isn’t necessarily a villain, responsible parenting comes out the hero. Grades K-2. --Ian Chipman