From School Library Journal
Grade 1-4-From the endpapers touting the "Sure Cures for Grumpiness" to the zany situations pictured throughout the text, Lichtenheld's full-color spreads show the many possible causes of grumpiness in a child's world. The range is wide, from stubbing a toe or having to eat "grown-up" cereal to having to cope with gravy that touched the peas on the dinner plate. Humor is everywhere, and the author clearly knows the types of traumas that can turn a child's mood sour. Of course, the tale has a happy ending-someone making the sourpuss laugh and thereby forgetting the reason for the grumpiness entirely. Side comments add to the fun ("Oh Poop," says one child when he gets underwear in a birthday package). Another page talks about the "dangers" of a big hug from Grandma and shows a newspaper story with a big-bosomed blonde granny and an arrow pointing to her rather-endowed chest, claiming that her grandson was "last seen here." Kids are sure to snicker with glee, feeling that they are getting away with seeing/hearing something a bit risqu. Lichtenheld is right on the mark, and his tale is sure to provoke smiles of recognition and delighted laughter from any youngster who has suffered from the "childhood grumpies."-Nancy Menaldi-Scanlan, LaSalle Academy, Providence, RI
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
K-Gr. 3. Any parent of a small child knows that the best cure for a youngster's bad temper is to redirect his or her attention toward something humorous. Lichtenheld demonstrates just how this works in a collection of large, double-spread cartoons depicting a variety of situations that might cause a rotten mood. The potential triggers, which run the gamut from being touched by a sibling and forced to eat adult breakfast cereal to receiving underwear as a birthday present, address issues known to set kids off. The mixed-media art features heavy doses of garish green, orange, and brown, which add punch to the book's humor. Lichtenheld's big, bold, broadly comic art style, reminiscent of the cartoon art in Mad Mag
azine and also David Shannon's books about mischievous David, is well suited to the tone of the text and has solid child appeal. Give this one to grumpy kids too old for William Steig's Pete's a Pizza
(1998) or to anyone in need of cheering up. Kay WeismanCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved