Book of the Week: Phooey!

November 15, 2007



I just received a copy of
Phooey! by Marc Rosenthal and before my kids have even seen it, I can guarantee it’s going to be a favorite.

Not much text. Because it doesn’t need it. The illustrations tell the whole story. And the story is this: A boy is bored. “Phooey!” he says, and concentrates so hard on being bored that he misses the very un-boring craziness happening all around him. A classic sort of story that is endlessly appealing.

The style of the drawings feels authentically retro. They are beautiful and simple. Kind of deceptively simple. As you study the picture you realize just how much is happening. Like a woman pulling an enormous canoe out of her tiny car trunk. (She doesn’t even play a part in the story. She’s just there being charming.) Or a pie hitting a poster of a viking heroine singing opera, landing right on the opera singer’s face.

I would call this a first comic-book. As I said, the pictures tell the story. The text is made of simple dialogue and great sound effects: WHIZZ! ZOOP! SKREE! SPLOOSH! OY! And the pictures are full of so many subtle and charming details that there is something new to discover with each reading.

A great addition to your library. Find Phooey! here.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Lizzy November 15, 2007 at 8:15 pm

i always look forward to your book of the week. this on looks extra great because it is something i can see both my kids enjoying. xmas xmas!

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2 Liz November 15, 2007 at 8:52 pm

I think this is the same author who does the Polo books, right? My daughter loves those, so glad to know there is something new.

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