BooksForKidsBlog

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Playing It Safe: Scaredy Squirrel by Melanie Watt




Scaredy is a neurotically risk-averse squirrel who knows all about the dangers of the "unknown." He knows there are killer bees, and sharks, and germs, and green Martians and all kinds of hazardous stuff just waiting to do him in if he leaves the safety of his tree. To avoid a potentially fatal mistake, he's made one of those pros and cons lists just to make sure he's doing the prudent thing.

ADVANTAGES OF NEVER LEAVING THE NUT TREE:

--GREAT VIEW
--PLENTY OF NUTS
--SAFE PLACE
--NO TARANTULAS, POISON IVY, MARTIANS, ETC.


DISADVANTAGES OF NEVER LEAVING THE NUT TREE:

--SAME OLD VIEW
--SAME OLD NUTS
--SAME OLD PLACE

It's a boring but safe life.... Wake up, eat a nut, look at view, go to sleep (repeat).

Of course, there are unforeseen contingencies in the most carefully planned life, and just in case, Scaredy has planned for those, too. He has a emergency kit, complete with parachute, Band-Aid, hard hat, can of sardines.... [Wait a minute--sardines? Yes, sardines are useful for distracting sharks (see above).]

When an unforeseen bee bumbles by and Scaredy drops his emergency bag, though, he inadvertently falls from the tree and discovers that he has one more contingency quality he hasn't planned for--Scaredy is a flying squirrel! Scaredy enjoys the glide all the way down, but just in case there might be something dangerous around, he pretends to be dead for two hours.

The newly intrepid flying Scaredy Squirrel cautiously adds three items to his daily schedule:

--jump into the unknown
--play dead
--return home

Hey, it's a start!

In addition to this 2007 ALA Notable Book, Scaredy Squirrel, (Kids Can, 2006), Scaredy widens his world in Scaredy Squirrel Makes a Friend and Scaredy Squirrel At the Beach.

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3 Comments:

  • My husband sent me your blog...I LOVE it! I'm a retired elementary librarian, too!

    By Anonymous Penny, at 7:04 AM  

  • Dear Penny,
    Thanks for your comment! I love hearing from other elementary librarians who appreciate the wonderful and under-valued world of children's literature.

    If you have any suggestion for books to review, please send them along.

    Regards to your husband, a man of obvious good taste!

    By Blogger GTC, at 11:04 AM  

  • The Scaredy Squirrel books were a huge, huge, huge success in our house, as was Best Best Friends and a number of your other recommendations. Keep up the great work!

    By Blogger The Critic, at 10:31 PM  

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