Lots of Lids! More Caps for Sale by Esphyr Slododkina
ONCE THERE WAS A PEDDLER WHO SOLD CAPS.
So began Esphyr Slobodkina's revered folktale, Caps for Sale: A Tale of a Peddler, Some Monkeys and Their Monkey Business and seventy years later, after recovering his own checked cap, and the four gray, brown, blue, and red caps from a mob of mischievous and imitative monkeys, the dapper peddler wakes from an unprofitable day and a weary night's sleep, ready for another work day. He carefully stows his wares on his head. First his own cap. . .
THEN A BUNCH OF GRAY CAPS,
A BUNCH OF BROWN CAPS,
A BUNCH OF BLUE CAPS,
AND ON THE VERY TOP...
A BUNCH OF RED CAPS.
The mettlesome monkeys who kept on stealing his hats the day before are still on his mind, but at first he sees no monkeys anywhere, and his mind turns to making some sales in the nearby town.
But unseen behind him, the monkeys are walking toward town, too.
RIGHT FOOT, LEFT FOOT.
RIGHT FOOT, LEFT FOOT.
All unaware of his following, the peddler reaches the town and begins to hawk his wares, pointing up to his caps and singing out...
"CAPS FOR SALE!
FIFTY CENTS A CAP!"
But the mimicking monkeys soon make themselves seen, copying every move the peddler makes--shaking their fingers, and hooting...
TSZ TSZ TSZ!
When he takes a banana for breakfast, they do, too. But when he sees them drop the peels on the street, the peddler models putting the peel in the trash can. Monkey see, monkey do!
When he makes a sale and bows to his customers, the monkeys bow, too. The townspeople in the square are fascinated, and one by one the red caps, the blue caps, the brown caps, and the gray caps are all sold, with flourishes and bows from the monkey troop. The people smile and the children laugh at the show, and the tired but happily richer peddler and his long-tailed partners head for home, satisfied.
It's not often that a beloved story book character wakes up after seventy years and goes right back to work, but that's what happens in this never before published sequel to a classic, More Caps for Sale: Another Tale of Mischievous Monkeys (HarperCollins, 2015). The unsold caps are waiting when the peddler awakes, and the snoozing monkeys in the nearby tree are ready for more high jinks of their own, just as we left them when we last closed the cover on this much beloved book.
Esphyr Slobodkina's friend, Ann Marie Mulhearn Sayer, had urged the pioneering artist over the years to do a sequel, and Slobodkina's follow-up plot of making do with monkey-see, monkey-do and her additional illustrations merge well with those from the original book in another peddler and monkey story that is just as clever and even more satisfying than the first.
As the New York Times reviewer adds, "The story feels satisfyingly complete. When we say goodbye to the peddler he's just as enigmatic as ever!"