Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Mitchell Goes Bowling - a review

Bowling is not necessarily a hot topic in picture books. If you're a fan or have a budding bowler in your midst, this is the book for you!

Durand, Hallie. 2013. Mitchell Goes Bowling. Somerville, MA: Candlewick.  Illustrated by Tony Fucile.

Mitchell (of Mitchell's License, Candlewick, 2011) is back, and this time he's going bowling!  No "bumper lanes" for this high-energy little guy, he's raring to hit the big time and battle his dad at the bowling alley.

"Battle on!" said Mitchell.  He just knew he was going to win.
Then it was his father's turn. He backed all the way up,
swooshed toward the line,
and did a little kick with his leg.
"STRIKE!" said his dad.  All the pins had gone down, and his dad got an X.
"Oh," said Mitchell.
On Mitchell's second turn,
he did the leg kick, too.
But the ball only went a little, so Mitchell ran after it.
The lane was slippery.
That's when the people next door asked for a new lane.

Maybe bowling isn't as easy as it looks, but Mitchell sure wants that "X" and a chance to do his dad's "steamin'- hot-potato dance."  As expected, Mitchell's dad has the perfect solution.

Four reasons to love this book (I can't think of any reasons not to):

  • Mitchell's hipster dad - black-framed glasses, goatee, cool clothes, short and shaggy hair - gotta' love him
  • Mitchell's dad doesn't "let" Mitchell win - there's never a lesson in that, and Mitchell's dad knows it
  • Mitchell's range of expression - happy, frustrated, angry, devilish, joyous and downright riotous - priceless
  • The steamin'-hot-potato dance - what child doesn't want to do that?

Advance Reader Copy - due on shelves September 10, 2013.  Get a copy!

Hallie Durand is a Jersey girl. (I look for these things) The book's dedication page offers a shout-out to Hanover Lanes in East Hanover, NJ.

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