The first wave of books from my recent expenditure of library booksale money arrived yesterday, and included a picture book I've wanted to read for ages-- I’m the Biggest Thing in the Ocean, by Kevin Sherry (Penguin/Dial, May 2007, 32pp).
It was just as good as I had hoped it would be. It is, in fact, the best picture book I’ve read since Scaredy Squirrel. The “biggest thing in the ocean” is a Giant Squid, who smugly says on the jacket flap, “I’m bigger than this book!” Encounters with other sea creatures bolster his conviction that he’s the biggest, until the much, much larger Humpback Whale appears—bye bye squiddy. This is a powerfully illustrated scene (in a bright and playful way), showing the squid’s tentacles dangling horrifically from the whale’s mouth. We were a bit taken aback. Was squiddy gone for good?
No! On the next page, there he was inside the whale, with all the other sea creatures, looking sad and bewildered, but then --- “I’m the biggest thing in the whale!”
And don’t neglect to look at the back of the book -- “I’m bigger than this bar code!” says Squid, gleefully.
In a nutshell, I might have to actually spend my own money on another copy of this book. My 4 year old does not want it to go to on to its new life at the library, and the fact that we are going to keep the complimentary bath clings with which it came does not mollify him. I don’t think that bath clings are really something that should circulate, somehow…
This is Kevin Sherry's first book, but since he signed a three deal book with Dial, there should, d.v., be more to come.
Here's another review, at Pixie Stix Kids Pix