No Boring Stories

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Book Cover: No Boring Stories

Illustrated by Charles Santoso!

The unpopular animals have had enough. They want to be in a picture book! Stories about mommy-loving kitties and cuddly bunnies at bedtime are boring. Wouldn't you rather hear about yeti crabs in robo suits and fierce babirusa princesses who fight giant grape monsters?! This group of misfits has a unique story to tell, but they'll never finish writing it if their over eager bunny neighbor won't GO AWAY!

 

Reviews:★Kirkus Reviews on Kirkus Reviews (starred review) wrote:

Bunny is in search of a writer’s group, but her offbeat style is out of sync with both her wide-eyed, fluffy appearance and her cuddly counterparts working in clusters on the endpapers.

Following an arrow toward the “International Society for Writers of Odd and Weird,” she knows she has found her people. Unfortunately, Miss Mole and the other rough-hewn members—a giraffe-necked weevil, a babirusa, and a yeti crab—dismiss her after one look. She goes underground (literally), but the irrepressible rabbit can’t contain her contributions to the group’s unfolding narrative about a princess fighting to save the kingdom (and sandwiches), relayed in cloud-shaped thought bubbles. Santoso’s incisive designs range from sequential panels to full-page compositions. He differentiates the dual storylines by using earth tones for “reality” and a more vibrant palette for the invented action. Bunny’s interruptions force a confrontation during which the authors express frustration at the preponderance of adorable bunny stories, while the accused explains her misery regarding “all these ideas inside me” but no one to help with discernment. Happily, when the plot’s conclusion proves elusive, Bunny’s idea for turning evil grapes into carrot raisin salad is just the ticket. Falatko builds increasingly embellished sentences while also pairing terminology about and examples of story elements: “relatable characters,” an “inciting incident,” “rising action,” and a “climax.”

Showcasing the values of persistence and collaboration, this intelligent comedy offers substance alongside the laughter.

Deanna Smith on School Library Journal wrote:

K-Gr 3-A group of animals enthusiastically attends a meeting of the "International Society for the Writers of Odd and Weird." A bunny shows up and is declared an intruder by a star-nosed mole. The mole is afraid that the bunny will want to create boring stories that include things like kittens, cuddling, and bedtime. However, the bunny will not be deterred and listens to the meeting in secret. As other animal members join in, the group begins to create an event-packed collaborative story. This book is written with comic book bubbles illustrating character thoughts and dialogue. The different animals often envision themselves in many of the scenes that they contribute to the story. These thought bubbles add an entertaining and funny element to the narrative. The illustrations are also broken down into graphic novel-style panels and square segments. These traits give the narrative a unique look and feel. White space is used effectively throughout, allowing the characters to stand out, and pastel hues are added to character thought bubbles, making them pop off the page when contrasted with the book's white background. VERDICT A fun title that encourages children to embrace their imaginations and unique talents and to express creativity in the written form.-Deanna Smith, Pender County Public Library, NCα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc.

on Booklist Online:

Rabbits often are portrayed as cute and fluffy, especially in children's books. But what if you are an adorable bunny completely bored with sweet stories? The frustrated bunny heads off to a gathering of a different sort, a meeting of the International Society for Writers of Odd and Weird. A mole, giraffe-necked weevil, babirusa, and yeti crab (all real creatures) have an active writing group. Bunny, eager to write a noncuddly story, wants to join them but is turned away. They have been working on a tale full of robots, lasers, and evil grapes, and as Bunny eavesdrops, she cannot contain her enthusiasm, even when she's sent away again. Providing an excellent writing model, the friends work together creating characters, rising action, and a climax, but what they don't have is an ending. Bunny's suggestion, however, finally wins them over. The simple but sophisticated cartoon-style illustrations elevate the humor of the clever text. Delving into the writing process, the value of collaboration, and unexpected friendship, this story is great fun for would-be writers of any age.