Monday, April 28, 2008

Clinton Gregory's Secret by Bruce Whatley - review

Clinton Gregory's Secret by Bruce Whatley
Bruce Whatley is another wonderful illustrator (Diary of a Wombat, Josephine Wants to Dance) whose work I never like more than when he's illustrating his own ideas. Hmph. That didn't come out very well. How about - I love the art in The Great Texas Hamster Drive, but I thought the story was too wordy. When he writes his own books, the art matches the tale. Better?

This book, about a little boy who has exciting dreams every night, is a winner. The book opens with a view of Clinton Gregory's bedroom, strewn with hints about the nocturnal adventures in store for him. The sharp-eyed reader (and I read this with Mr. Four, who is nothing if not sharp-eyed) will see a biplane, a triceratops, a LEGO pirate ship, baseball paraphernalia, frogs, etc. As each of Clinton's fascinations shows up in his dreams, we get a little thrill of recognition.

You could use this book as incentive for a reluctant bedtimer, but it's fun sans agenda too.

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