Select one of the keywords
Oddly    by Joyce Dunbar & Patrick Benson order for
by Joyce Dunbar
Order:  USA  Can
Candlewick, 2009 (2009)
* * *   Reviewed by Bob Walch

Welcome to the wonderfully odd world of three very strange looking creatures. Oddlet, Strangelet and Lostlet are unlike anything you have ever seen before. These unusual charatcters waddle about repeating a number of questions such as - 'Where am I? What am I? Who am I?'

Then one day a lost, little boy wanders into their midst and he too asks the same questions. As the trio and little boy interact a whole new set of questions arise. When the child explains he's lost and wants to go home he must first explain what home means and 'What means mom?'

This rhetorical approach leads to perhaps the pivotal question. The boy sobs that he wants some love. A deluge of questions follow - 'Love? What means love? Can you hold it? Can you twirl it? Can you hear it?'

As you perhaps can imagine, Oddlet, Strangelet and Lostlet are now about to discover what love means. The child acts as the catalyst that helps them grasp this new, strange, wonderful concept and this understanding also leads to answers of the creatures' other questions.

This whimsical story is appropriate for children three years of age and older. Since it may need some explanation I would think the older the child is the better. A lovely tale with beguiling illustrations by Patrick Benson, Oddly is quite a bit more sophisticated than the typical children's picture book.

I would read the story aloud with the child a number of times and then ask questions about the story. See what the youngster thinks about the creatures and their questions before you try any type of explanation of what is happening here.

Don't be in a hurry to explain everything that's happening in this book. This is the type of story that will grow with your child so let him or her come to an understanding of Oddly over a period of time.

Note: Opinions expressed in reviews and articles on this site are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of BookLoons.

Find more Kids books on our Shelves or in our book Reviews