Tuesday, December 13, 2016

It came in the mail by Ben Clanton

Nothing like going old-school with a dragon!

Liam loves to get mail, as readers might guess from the endpapers covered with letters. Sadly, he never gets any. Oh well. Liam has an idea; he'll write a letter! He decides to send it to the mailbox itself and the next thing he knows, he gets something, something amazing; a dragon! Liam is so excited he keeps asking for - and getting - more and more and more and more things through the mail. Finally, things get a little out of control and he has idea to help him scale back on the mail.

I've come across Clanton a few times, but this is his first book that thoroughly delighted me. The clever typeface, fantasy flip of the postal service, and the increasing flood of things are both humorous and satisfying. I loved the colored pencil look (yes, I realize it's actually watercolor) and the many clever details. The burnt letters, the air mail puns, you can read this book multiple times and find something new every time.

My one quibble is that the diverse kid, Jamel, is relegated to friend instead of protagonist. I think he would have made a great main character and looked awesome on the cover.

Verdict: You'll need to set up an activity station for mail when you purchase this, because every kid is going to want to try their hand at writing letters, just in case they might get a dragon!

ISBN: 9781481403603; Published June 2016 by Simon & Schuster; Borrowed from another library in my consortium

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