All in Reviews: Children's Books
Danika is back to review the children's books that neither engaged nor enraged her much.
"I'm trying to imagine someone actually telling their child “There was almost a train wreck! but the Caboose had functional brakes, so there was not a train wreck!” and the child feeling anything at all."
It’s like printed soma for babies--all of the soporific effect, none of the guilt that might come with giving a baby actual sleeping pills!
Everything about it places it so close to being normal children’s fare, but it misses the mark by just enough to become horrifying in it’s weird wrongness.
At first the reader’s own internalized hegemonic narratives -- heterosexual family structure; cissexist, binary gender norms -- may predispose them towards a particular reading of the family as a mother, a father, and a little boy. Closer analysis reveals a narrative radically open to interpretation.
McElmurry seems to have intended a story about the value of social connections with a side helping of animal noises.
Children may accept this apple farm fairy tale, but adult readers will quickly notice the sad reality that underlies Annie's starry-eyed dream.
This is a book about how there is no escape from the speaker’s love, none, no matter what you do.
The central conceit of Owl Babies is somewhat surprising: it turns out that the Owl Mother is a real dick.