This very evening I discovered the joy of reading George Saunders...
"There were approximately fifteen hundred gappers living in the sea near Frip. Each Frip family had about ten goats. Therefore, there would normally be about five hundred gappers per yard, or fifty gappers per goat."
What is a gapper?
Well, it is this baseball-like, Velcro-type crustacean with multitudinous eyes, that crawls out of the ocean at night along with (give or take) 1,499 of its buddies, all intent upon attaching themselves to local goats in a burr-like fashion. Side effects? Serious immediate goat-lassitude followed by actual withering, and depletion of milk supply!
Exactly! Of course!
Oh man... it's been a long while since I got so caught up into one of these child/adult books, the last time being Salman Rushdie's excellent "Haroun And The Sea Of Stories."
This one is every bit as good, or better. And every bit as crazy.
Let me put it this way... I stumbled across this book in the store, sat down with it... read the whole thing, laughed... laughed some more... thought of many people I want to give this book to... and ended up purchasing five copies. One will be for my own re-reading.
It is hilarious, and meaningful all at once... as the slipcover says, it's an "adult story for children, a children's story for adults."
The illustrations are superb, and the quality of the book is impeccable... a work of art.
It is a flawless imaginative work, that... while it makes you laugh at every second sentence, makes you realize that resourcefulness in the midst of undeserved adversity can really save the day! That selfishness is ugly... that neighbors ought to be... neighbors.
This little girl named Capable... she is a terrific role model for children.... and adults!
A brilliant work, and recommended without reservation. When you read this story to children the only question will be, who will love it more, you or them? Neither one loving it is simply an impossibility!