BooksForKidsBlog

Monday, August 23, 2021

Sea Monsters? Pirates? Shipwrecks? Oh, MY! The Quiet Boat Ride by Sergio Ruzzier

Under a bright morning sky, Fox launches his little rowboat into the tranquil pond. But before he can row away, Chick appears, full of questions, as usual.

"WHAT ARE YOU DOING, FOX?"

"I'M GOING FOR A QUIET BOAT RIDE."

"CAN I COME, TOO?" ASKED CHICK.

"I GUESS IT DOESN'T HAVE TO BE QUIET..." SAYS FOX, NOT WITHOUT REGRET.

And Fox is right about that. As soon as they shove off, Chick begins asking questions. Can he be captain? Are there sea monsters down there under the water? Are there scary pirates on this pond? What about shipwrecks?

"I DON'T KNOW, FOX. THIS WAS SUPPOSED TO BE A QUIET BOAT RIDE!" LAMENTS CHICK.

"A QUIET BOAT RIDE WAS MY PLAN!" MUTTERS FOX.

Fox reluctantly rows the boat to the shore, and as they disembark, Chick kisses the ground. Safe at last.

And as Fox ruefully remarks, no encounter is quiet with Chick around, in Sergio Ruzzier's latest super easy beginning chapter book, Fox and Chick: The Quiet Boat Ride and Other Stories (Chronicle Books, 2019).

In a classic example of the folklorish "noodle" tale, Chick is the perfect "noodlehead," and Fox is the unlikely and patient "straight man," who tries to bring the clueless little chick up to speed in three gentle stories in which Fox is forced to explain how things work to his inquisitive little buddy. In the second story, "The Chocolate Cake" and the third, "The Sunrise," there's a laugh on every page for both adults or older kids who share this book with younger children just beginning to read on their own. With a cogent little tale of innocence and caretaking told in comic book-format, four frames to the page, this latest from author-illustrator Sergio Ruzzier is a little gem. Ruzzier's other Fox and Chick stories and other picture books include Fox & Chick: The Party: Book 1 and Fox & Chick: The Sleepover: and Other Stories. (See reviews here:)

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