If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.After snagging his toe, Mr. Nogginbody makes a visit to his local hardware store in search of solutions. Armed with a shiny new hammer, he successfully fixes the nail protruding from his floor. But the satisfaction of his first repair carries him away, and he figures that anything resembling a nail--from a lamp switch to a fire hydrant--can be fixed with a good whack. The results are predictably and theatrically disastrous, until Mr. Nogginbody arrives at a gentle awakening and recognizes that not everything is a nail.
"After stubbing his toe on a protruding nail, Mr. Nogginbody gets a hammer and quickly fixes the problem. In fact, it's such fun that he goes on a quest to fix everything else with the hammer, cavalierly smashing anything remotely shaped like a nail, from flowers and water sprinklers to chess pieces and stop signs, with often hilarious results. Shannon combines his fabulous trademark angles and original points of view (elaborate close-ups, mesmerizing angles from atypical perspectives) with the irreverent, mischievous humor of his Caldecott Honor-winning David series, while introducing a quirky, anthropomorphized egg-shaped character with a charming bowler hat. Our black-and-white hero is supported and surrounded by bold splashes of color in a deliberately sloppy style that is equal parts familiar and eccentric. Children will delight in Mr. Nogginbody's well-meaning and ridiculous fix-it attempts that yield comical destruction, and readers who take their stories on the sweeter side will be pleased that it ends on a gentle note. Bonus points for the title font being cleverly constructed entirely out of curved nails.--Becca Worthington Copyright 2010 Booklist"
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review:
"Mr. Nogginbody is a jauntier and more surreal version of Humpty Dumpty: his bowler hat, collar, and tie are stacked together at the top of his ovoid body, above his marvelously expressive face. Thrilled to discover that a hammer can fix a nail that's popped up from his floor, he starts seeing nails everywhere (some readers may recognize the classic law of the instrument at work), and it's hammer time all the time for objects that even slightly resemble nails. Pulverizing a lamp's turn knob, a showerhead, a flower, and all the pieces of a chess game in the park, he joyously declares "Done!" "Much better!" and "Fixed it!" (or "Flggst bit!" when the now-broken shower erupts on his face). Just when he's ready to whack his own noggin--a wonderful moment of comic suspense--an epiphany arrives: "Maybe I can't fix everything with a hammer. Because not everything is a nail!" Drawn and hand-lettered in rich black ink and punctuated by washes of bright color, Shannon's latest has the timeless exuberance and psychological profundity of a great comedy. In short: nailed it. Ages 3--5. Agent: Steven Malk, Writers House. (Sept.)"
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