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Baloney (Henry P.) Paperback – September 8, 2005
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Trust the ultracreative author/illustrator pair, Jon Scieszka and Lane Smith (The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales, The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs!, the Time Warp Trio series, and more), to mastermind a plot this bizarre and yet somehow familiar to any school kid. Sure, Henry P. Baloney is a cute, saucer-eyed, green alien, but he has problems just like you and me--such as the threat of Permanent Lifelong Detention. Remarkably, as Scieszka reports in his afterword, when he received and decoded the transmission of this story (directly from deep space, mind you), it was written in a combination of many Earth languages, including Finnish, Swahili, Latvian, Esperanto, and Inuktitut (decoder included). Go figure.
Caldecott Honor artist Lane Smith must have spent a lot of time in detention, doodling away the hours. His weird, wild, wonderful pictures tell at least half the story, illustrating for readers' enlightenment just what a zimulis ("pencil" in Latvian) or speelplaats (Dutch for "playground") looks like. Fans of this ingenious pair will not be disappointed and may even make a twrf (Welsh for "noise") of joy! (Ages 5 to 9) --Emilie Coulter --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.--This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Top Customer Reviews
"Last Tuesday morning, at 8:37 a.m., Henry P. Baloney was late once too often." "That's it," said Miss Bugscuffle. "Permanent Lifelong Detention . . . unless you have one very good and very believable excuse."
Then begins the wildest tale tale you've ever heard. It all starts when a zimulis is misplaced. It is on a deski in a torakku on the way to szkola, and suddenly the torakku goes past! Henry grabbed his zimulis and jumped out, right onto a razzo launch pad. He opened the pordo and landed on the next razzo while it was blasting off.
Then things got really strange!
If you could see the illustrations, you would be able to make more of this story. You would probably guess that a zimulis is a pencil and that a torakku is a truck. Decoding these strange words will definitely keep your mind occupied. Just when you think you have them figured out, they switch again. It turns out that the strange words are in Finnish, Latin, Ugbaric, Maltese, Swahili, French, Melanesian Pidgen, Esperanto, Italian, Spoonerisms, Dutch, Japanese, Welsh, German, Inuktitut, Latvian, and transpositions. There is an afterword that tips you off, and a decoder to help you decipher the words. But you will have much more fun trying it on your own, learning from the context of the surrounding words and the illustrations.
So obviously, the text and the illustrations build on one another. Because you aren't always sure what the words mean, the story is unexpected.Read more ›
After I read it, I placed in the "sharing" center for them to borrow and read. They all clamored to get it. Then they began negotiating to see who would get it next.I saw them reading and going over those very special words AND making sense of them. What better recommendation is that??!!
"Dilectare ut Docere" - the Latin phrase is a perfect description of this book. It means, roughly, "Delight them in order to teach them." If you want to unclog your child's television-clogged synapses, get this book. An alien lost his WHAT?
If you have a sense of humor and don't have "Squids will be Squids" and "The Stinky Cheese Man" then you're missing out. And so are your kids. "Math Curse" is good too...(my wife the math teacher makes me say that).
Baloney, Henry P. suffers from both poor illustrations and a lack of humor. The plot line is forced rather than well laid out. These are aberrations in the work of Scieszka/Smith.
In the interests of not judging others too harshly (lest I, as a result, am left without excuse) I must point out that the sheer invention and novelty of this book makes it worth reading at least once. The basis for my extremely low rating is that this book is not even close to being up to par with the other work of Scieszka and Smith. It isn't even in the same league as works like The Stinky Cheese Man and The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs.
Unless you are a big fan of Scieszka and Smith, I recommend that you look somewhere else (the aforementioned books or Math Curse). Baloney, Henry P. is not their best.
This book is a challenge to read out loud because some words are in a different language, some are transpositions, and some are Spoonerism. That challenge actually adds to the appeal of the book for me. My son is learning to read and struggles with words in English. The story is funny, silly and absolute nonsense, as you would expect from the "Baloney" in the title.
Lane Smith does a marvelous job with the illustrations, from "the green alien with big ears", to the zimulis, to the razzo, to the Planet Astrosus, to the sighing flosser... The book is cover to cover wonderful.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
It was great...used it for context clues...kids loved it.Published 10 months ago by Teresa Alfaro-Dougherty
Great book to teach context clues. A funny read for my class. I'd recommend it for Grades 3+Published 11 months ago by Online Shopper
My students loved this book, and were so into figuring out what the words meant. It's a great book for teaching vocabulary in context!Published 14 months ago by Rebecca Tucker
Great book for teaching context clues to second graders! They LOVE Henry P!Published 15 months ago by PB
Absolutely love this book - I use it to teach my younger students about inference and clue finding.....They LOVE the silly words too... ; )Published 20 months ago by C.S.
I love this book and so do my students...It really helps them apply the skill of context clues to figure out the meaning of the different words...Soooo much fun!Published 24 months ago by Eeyorelvr