Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Harriet Can Carry It - a book review

Today's quote for you:

"Today you are you! That is truer than true! There is no one alive, who is you-er than you!    -Dr. Seuss

Today's featured book:

Title:  Harriet Can Carry It
Author:  Kirk Jay Meueller
Illustrator:  Sarah Vonthron-Laver

Let's take a peek inside shall we?

About the book:

Harriet the kangaroo has an exhausting job delivering mail each day.  She stuffs her pouch full of flyers, letters and parcels and hops off to do her job.  One day she has a melt-down and decides she needs a much deserved break.  She decides a day at the beach, with her beloved little joey, is just the medicine she needs to refresh herself and get away from all the pressure of her work. 

 The next morning she packs a towel, her special baby and his favourite ducky inside her empty, spacious pouch and springs out the door, headed for some well-deserved R & R.  She hears someone call to her, "Hey!" and old Wanda Wombat, her nosey and grouchy neighbour, appears out of nowhere and informs Harriet that a day at the beach is just what she needs in her life right now too.  She is so bold as to ask Harriet to carry her beach chair because Harriet's pouch is nearly empty and is so spacious.  Wanda uses flattery and manipulation on Harriet and it works very well for her.  Harriet reluctantly obliges and stuffs the chair inside her pouch and hops along with Wanda following her nonchalantly.   

The cumulative story, written in rhyme,  has already exhausted Harriet, meet up with Kenny Koala (and his surfboard), Marcie the Mouse ( and her kayak and paddle), Danny and Dana, twin dingoes, (and their ying ring ), and Bill Bandicoot (and his obstanant umbrella) which proves to be the last straw. You guessed it.  With Wanda's guilt trip laid upon her each time Harriet feels obliged to carry all their stuff to the beach. Harriet, overloaded and sweating carrying everyone's personals, finally explodes and refuses to carry one more thing.  "Enough is enough." "This has to stop. I won't carry your stuff." Good for you Harriet for taking a stand, putting your foot down and taking charge of the situation that is clearly out of control. After all, her mission was to have some time off, relax, and have some fun alone with her little joey. 

Just then Paddy O'Possum drives up with his pick-up truck and saves the day! He is the wonderful solution to everyone's predicament which allows Harriet off the hook and lets her get on with day.

The illustrations are done in ink and watercolour and are very detailed and expressive.  The author at the end of the book has included an Animal Facts page that covers all the animal characters featured in the story.  

About the Author:

Kirk Jay Mueller is a writer, teacher, and singer-songwriter. He taught children for thirty years. Throughout his teaching career, he set aside time every day to write engaging stories and a song or two. So it is no surprise that now he especially enjoys going into schools/classrooms with his guitar to share his songs and stories with children. Harriet Can Carry It is his first children’s book. Kirk enjoys hiking, surfing, playing basketball and tennis. He lives in Valencia, California, with his family and their curious cat, Scruffy. Please visit Kirk's website.

About the illustrator:

Sarah Vonthron-Laver is an Illustrator and toy designer who’s never happier than when her hands are covered in China Ink. She lives in England with her husband and two daughters, who give her inspiration for many of the things she draws. She’s also inspired by modern architecture and textiles, and loves traveling to discover new sights.  Visit her website.

Book Review Rating:  8 (Fantastic!)

Read on and read always! Have a great day everyone.

No comments: