Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Happy Book Bday, Sea Monkey & Bob by Aaron Reynolds!

by Aaron Reynolds
Illustrated by Debbie Ridpath Ohi
Simon & Schuster
ages 4 to 8

Two delightfully anxious friends learn that they can overcome anything—even gravity—in this humorous and heartwarming picture book from bestselling author Aaron Reynolds and illustrator Debbie Ridpath Ohi.

Bob the puffer fish and his best buddy Sea Monkey may be little but they’ve got one ocean-sized problem. Sea Monkey’s terrified he’ll sink straight to the bottom of the ocean. After all, he’s heavy, and all heavy things sink, right? Bob on the other hand is worried that his puffed up frame will float up above the surface. He’s light, and all light things float! How will they stay together when the forces of gravity are literally trying to pull them apart? By holding hands, of course! Sea Monkey and Bob learn that sometimes the only way to overcome your fears is to just keep holding on…


Giggles galore and a slide into science too! Sea Monkey and Bob the puffer fish aren't exactly the brightest in the ocean, but with their simple and silly banter, they bring across the concept of floating and sinking smoother than a passing wave, and that all with a lovely wind of friendship thrown in.

This isn't a picture book heavy on text but lets the simple back and forth between Sea Monkey and Bob take over. And the text is simple. Although recommended for ages 4 to 8, younger listeners will have no trouble falling into the small adventure and will probably laugh sometimes more than the slightly older crowd.

Text and illustration combine to bring the story to life. The colors are vibrant and the characters playful. The dialogue spurts around the scenes, letting word mix with color to lead the tale along. To ensure a seamless flow in the funny exchange between the sea creatures (especially when reading aloud), the dialogue tags are dropped and substituted with color changes--yellow for Bob and white for Sea Monkey. For parents/grandparents/teachers: it's easy to follow and make those fun voice changes.

The concept of floating and sinking comes across crystal clear and works well for a first dab into science. The silliness of the characters keeps it worlds away from dry. Instead, the intelligence clashes against their goofy thoughts and conclusions to create a humor kids are sure to enjoy.

All about the author. . .

Aaron Reynolds is a New York Times bestselling author and has written many highly acclaimed books for kids, including Here Comes Destructosaurus!Carnivores, and the Caldecott Honor–winning book Creepy Carrots! He regularly makes time to visit schools where his hilarious hands-on presentations keep kids spellbound. Aaron lives in Chicago with his wife, two kids, four cats, and anywhere between zero and ten goldfish, depending on the day. Visit Aaron at Aaron-Reynolds.com.

All about the Illustrator. . .

Debbie Ridpath Ohi is the author of Where Are My Books?. Her illustrations also appear in Sea Monkey and Bob, written by Aaron Reynolds; I’m Bored (New York Times Notable Book) and Naked!, written by Michael Ian Black; as well as ten Judy Blume chapter books and middle grade titles. For more info, visit DebbieOhi.com or @InkyElbows on Twitter.

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