Mail Harry to the Moon! by Robie H. Harris, illustrated by Michael Emberley (Little, Brown, 2008).
This is not a science fiction/fantasy nominee (one of the 163 (or whatever) books I'm supposed to be, like, reading for the Cybils). It is, instead, a really great and funny picture book, that arrived recently at my work address (because I don't want to risk boxes of books being left outside in the rain at home). I read it during break, laughed, and shared it with co-workers--more laughter. I took it home, shared it with children--more amusement. And when I asked my oldest if there was a picture book that had really stuck in his mind, that he might want to nominate for the Cybils, this is what he suggested.
The narrator, a boy who looks to be about 5ish, is not best pleased with his little brother, Harry. The trials of being the older sibling are many and various, and such constant vexations call for drastic measures. For example:
"Before Harry, nobody took a bite of my banana. Yesterday, Harry did. So I said, THROW HARRY IN THE TRASH!"
One evening the narrator, provoked beyond bearing by the nightly screaming, screams back "MAIL HARRY TO THE MOON!" And the next morning, there is not a peep from Harry. Harry is not in the trash, or down the toilet, back inside Mommy, or in the zoo....Could he be ON THE MOON???
And all the latent protectiveness that many of us older siblings have deep inside us comes to the fore, and a rescue mission to the moon is launched!
I love this book.
Here's an interview with Robie Harris over at Mother Reader's place, where she talks about her inspiration for the book (funny!). And here's another review, at Books For Kids Blog.
Amanda at A Patchwork of Books is giving away this book, and another by Harris, over at her blog. If you enter, but don't win, come back on here on Tuesday, and you might learn something to your advantage...