I Am Papa Snap and These Are My Favorite No Such Stories
Tommy Ungerer ~ Harper & Row, 1971
I mentioned finding this book at a Goodwill a few weeks ago on the post I did on Curious Pages. I just now got around to photographing some of the drawings, so today is as good as any to get the review in. First off, the title kills me. The idea of a "No Such" story is hilarious. So good, I wish I'd thought of it. Second, all things Ungerer kill in this house, so even without the witty premise it still would have rocked. And rock it does, my friends. A handful of gorgeously absurd illustrations with equally meaninglessly yet funny tales. Take for instance the sad story of Mr. Slop Glut.
When Mr. Slop Glut visits his favorite restaurant he orders everything on the menu. The other night he put on so much weight during his meal that he crashed through the floor on his way out.
Or this existentialist groundhog (?) ...
Everyday, rain, shine or overcast, he walks down to the shore. He sits on a rock to read or dream. He has no friends, no enemies. He lives in peace. No one knows anything about him. Not even his name.
If nothing else, this book is a huge can of worms for children, begging both giggles and questions with each melancholy tale.
Really, kiddos get so much of the humdrum and the everyday, well, in everyday. As parents, our job should be to expose them to as many different vantage points in life as we can. Only then can the next generations begin to evolve and expand their world views. For this, Ungerer is one of the masters. He let his freak flag fly big time, and we are all the better for it.
The Mellops Strike Oil
Seeds and More Seeds
The Three Robbers
Orlando The Brave Vulture
Christmas Eve at the Mellops'
The Beast of Monsieur Racine
Book of Various Owls