I have a confession: I’m not personally a huge Mo Willems fan. My girls and I never really got the Elephant and Piggie books. Knuffle Bunny was a much bigger hit here, but I still wouldn’t consider it an all-time favorite. His latest offering, That Is NOT a Good Idea!, puts me a little more firmly in his camp. The thing about Willems‘ books is that they are fairly simple plot-wise, and this one is no exception. It’s the story of a wily fox and a sweet and innocent little goose. The fox spends the bulk of the story enticing the goose to go with him for a stroll. The story line goes back and forth between the goose/fox and the cute little goslings on the cover that reiterate the title sentiment: “That is NOT a good idea!” The story ends with a total reversal, a perfect example of dramatic irony. (For this reason, this picture book would make a great teaching tool for older students learning about this particular literary device.) Besides the dramatic irony, the other thing that makes this picture book so great are the illustrations and the format. It’s reminiscent of an old-time movie, with black-and-white text-filled frames interspersed among the color illustrations. Even the fox looks like an old-time villain. Lulu, my very sophisticated nine year old, has even picked this one up and re-read it, and that alone makes it a Highly Recommended title. (Balzer + Bray, 2013)
What’s on your read-aloud shelf this week? Leave a link to your blog post below. If you’re not a blogger, tell us about it in the comments!