To engage in mildly risky behavior evokes giggles in a child who is protected all day and night. Testing boundaries and pushing them are a part of every childhood--Lehrhaupt and Forsythe turn this idea on its head.
So, why shouldn’t we open Lehrhaupt’s Warning: Do Not Open This Book!? The narrator tells the reader right away: “you don’t want to let the monkeys out.”
Of course, most readers won’t be able to resist the urge to turn the pages. I couldn’t.
The result is an escalating melee, complete with monkeys of many kinds, toucans and even a giant alligator. In addition to causing overall mayhem, these mischievous creatures even take over the job of the illustrator! Be warned.
Just when things get truly out of control, Lehrhaupt invites the readers to be part of the solution by setting a banana trap and catching the monkeys back in the book.
My inner child just delights at such fun and humor. And my writer self just marvels at how a flat two-dimensional book can hold three-dimensional fun.
While at the annual SCBWI Summer Conference in Los Angeles this past month I heard that a lot of editors are looking for books that are “outside the box.” I can only conclude that this is the brilliance of Warning: Do Not Open This Book!
Congrats to Adam Lehrhaupt and Matthew Forsythe on their summer blockbuster. What a splashy debut. Now, everyone go buy the book and giggle your way to defying the rules!
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First Fridays will feature Bryan Patrick Avery, published writer , man of mystery, and professional magician among other things.
Second Fridays will feature awesome multi-award winning author Marsha Diane Arnold who will be writing about character-driven and/or nature-based books and/or anything she likes :)
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