From School Library Journal
K-Gr 4-Abbott and Costello's beloved comedy routine receives a picture-book treatment, complete with comical illustrations. A tall brown bear plays the coach (Abbott), a chubby white bunny plays the catcher (Costello), and they go back and forth about the oddly named members of their baseball team. "Who's on first. What's on second. I Don't Know's on third." Martz's expressive characters cavort on backgrounds that pop with appealing color. Clever page formatting conveys the pacing that is such an integral part of the laughs. At bottom, though, "Who's on First?" is about auditory humor, so the translation to a visual medium, while it may illuminate the jokes for kids, can't quite capture the magic of the original. Historical notes about the comedians and their routine appear at the end of the book.-Kathleen Kelly MacMillan, Carroll County Public Library, MDα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
This famously hilarious Abbott and Costello routine will have adults laughing even before their kids get into the swing. When a new catcher, a white rabbit, is hired for the baseball team, he asks the coach, a brown bear, the names of the other players. So comes the classic response: “Who’s on first. What’s on second. I Don’t Know’s on third.” Confusion reigns as the banter between coach and catcher gets sillier and sillier with each new question and answer. The supercute cartoon illustrations, arranged in both panels and strips against solid backgrounds, only intensify the zaniness. The extended joke could just as easily have been accomplished in 32 pages instead of 40, but, nevertheless, this version easily bats a triple. The idea of turning a comedy sketch into a picture book is a fine one, and one wonders what imitators might be next. Grades K-3. --Cummins, Julie