Great Green Turkey Creek Monster
James Flora ~ Atheneum, 1976
(Excuse the scans. Our copy is severely browning, so I did the best I could.) Looks like it is gonna be all about Jim Flora this week and next here at VKBMKL. Grandpa's Farm was rediscovered under the boy's bed when I pulled it out in search of his pet mouse, Speedy ~ don't ask ~ so I decided to track down all the Floras on our shelves that I haven't yet written up and give them props. Starting with this one... one of his later (and therefore still affordable) books about a "creature" the Great Green Hooligan Vine.
"There is just no way to stop a Hooligan Vine. Once they start growing they never stop until they decide they are big enough. Then they stop. It generally takes about six days."
Kooky. Zany. Whacky. All words that come to mind when reading this aloud to the boy. A great chance ~ parents and story-time readers ~ to use those outstanding vocal skills making funny voices and obnoxious sound effects.
Soooooo, there's this crazy vine, see. He wreaks havoc on an innocent town, and it is not until a little boy toots his trombone that the vine is conquered. Classic Flora, and though it might not be his most famous or innovative work, the two-tone drawings are cool and set a slightly eerie tone that is delightfully sinister.
I love how Flora always talks out of the pages to his readers, like here, in the closing lines...
The town of Turkey Creek is going to let the Great Green Hooligan Vine out of its box next Fourth of July. It's going to be a grand celebration. You are invited, if you want to come. You know where Turkey Creek is, don't you? Well, you go past Indianapolis about three miles and then turn left. It's the first road after you pass Alabama. And don't forget to bring your trombone.
Kangaroo for Christmas
Pishtosh Bullwash and Wimple
Leopold the See-Through Crumbpicker
The Day the Cow Sneezed
Little Hatchy Hen
Grandpa's Witched Up Christmas
My Friend Charlie
Sherwood Walks Home
The Fabulous Firework Family
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