Friday, March 11, 2011

The TTLG 2011 Picture Book Celebration - Book Seventy

When I was still very young, the country I was living in was plunged into civil war. For eighteen months I lived every day not knowing what the next day would bring. After we left the war zone and moved to a peaceful country, I quickly discovered that I wasn't too keen on surprises. I liked to know what was coming and when it was coming, just in case I needed to duck or get out of the way.
   Today's picture book is about a little boy who carefully prepares for situations "just in case." Needless to say I completely understand where he is coming from.
Just in Case

Judith Viorst
Illustrated by Diana Cain Bluthenthal
Just in CasePicture Book
For ages 5 to 7
Simon and Schuster, 2010, 978-1-4424-1282-8
   Charlie is the kind of boy who likes to be ready “just in case” something goes wrong. Whenever it rains really hard - and just in case the house gets flooded - he puts on his waterproof boots, his goggles, and his rain coat. He inflates his plastic boat and opens up his umbrella.
   Charlie likes to be prepared for all kinds of possible situations. If “all the food stores are closed” for a long time and “there’s nothing left to eat except old dirty socks” Charlie will be ready because he has made a hundred and seventeen Peanut-butter sandwiches. He has even stockpiled canned food for the dog, crispy crackers for his mother, and bagels with cream cheese and lox for his father.
   Children will love the way in which Charlie prepares for some truly amusing situations. Just in case a lion gets loose, or his favorite sitter can’t come, or something sneaks up the stairs, or he is attacked by birds, or he is grabbed by a mermaid, Charlie will be ready.
   With its amusing story and its wonderful multimedia artwork, this picture book is a must for children who like to be in control of every situation. 

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