CM . . .
. Volume XVII Number 9. . . .October 29, 2010
Thus begins a second Oscar Ollie Brown misadventure with a mother who speaks in linguistically confusing ways. Being told “Now Oscar, can’t you hold your tongue?” results in the poor boy’s attempt to grab his tongue and hold on tight. Her command to “Drop everything and come here quick!” leads Oscar Ollie to obey instantly, ending up with a shoe-full of pet fish! Adhering to Mom’s direction to “Be sure to be a lamb, my dear!” during Auntie’s Maude’s visit elicits from Oscar a bleat which frightens the poor woman enough to cause her to drop her jam. It is not until Mom’s command to “Keep an eye on Mister Tom…” (the household cat) that Ollie experiences some success, though not without a significant amount of destruction on the way.
Sherrard, who will be remembered as the creator of Oscar Ollie Brown’s first adventure, entitled There’s a Cow Under My Bed, has used the same formula for the text in There’s a Goldfish in My Shoe! Four line rhyming verses interspersed with David Jardine’s decidedly off-the-wall illustrations make up the 32 page picture book. For an adult reader, the child/adult idiomatic misunderstandings seem to have worn a bit thin by the end of the book. Jardine’s depictions of the characters and situations are, to put it mildly, rather peculiar. Making head or tail of them requires much attention to detail and a good deal of artistic imagination—with the artist’s being obviously well endowed with both — however, the overall result is a bit daunting.
Recommended with Reservations.
A retired teacher-librarian, Valerie Nielsen lives in Winnipeg, MB.
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Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.