Friday, September 5, 2014

Detective Blue

Horn Book (September/October, 2011)
Little Boy Blue is all grown up and trying to keep a handle on crime in storytown. He tracks down the Dish and the Spoon, nabs Mary's little lamb -- but where is Miss Muffet? Takeoffs on Mother Goose and other folk literature have been thick on the ground since The Stinky Cheese Man (rev. 11/92); this one stands out for its sheer relentlessness, as one iconic character after another advises and distracts Detective Blue in his quest to find the missing Miss: "FORGET the plum, Horner! Just give me the FACTS!" The Three Blind Mice, sitting on a park bench, are not helpful, either: "Who just ran by?" "I didn't see anyone." "Maybe it was the farmer's wife." Comic-strip panels illustrate Blue's determined investigation, with Arnold's goggle-eyed characters alert to the quest and the humor. The story saves its best joke for the end, which we won't give away here except to ask, Do you know Miss Muffet's first name? roger sutton

No comments: