Showing posts with label Junia Wonders. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Junia Wonders. Show all posts

Friday, May 3, 2019

Zachary and the Great Potato Catastrophe by Junia Wonders, Giulia Lombardo

Rating: WORTHY!

Junia Wonders sounds like a made-up name for a children's book writer, but apparently it isn't! So we have Junia and Giulia, who is the accomplished artist. This was a cute children's picture book based, purportedly, on a true story! This rat named Zachary in the story, lived under the wooden floor of a bakery, which is never a good thing. Anyone who's read any of my The Little Rattuses™ series can't fail to see that I love rats, but I'd wouldn't want to buy anything from a bakery that has rats living on the premises, pet or otherwise!

Anyway, Zachary was in the habit of coming out and taking just one cupcake or whatever, which he would sneak back to his lair and consume. He lived a solitary life and didn't want anyone else around. He wasn't into sharing, not even with his hosts, so when he found a large sack of potatoes, which were different from anything he'd tasted before, he brought one back with him, and discovered that they were so addictive, even without being chipped, fried, and salted! He started bringing all the potatoes home, until he had a bed of them under the floorboards.

Potatoes keep remarkably well, but they don't keep forever. Zachary discovered this when his supply began turning green and stinky. The smell even reached the baker who seems to have been extraordinarily lax with his stock-taking in that he never missed a whole sack of potatoes until a rotting smell alerted him. He uncovered the rat hole in the wall then, and a startled and terrified Zachary, who despite an attempted assault with a saucepan, managed to escape into the sewer where he gave up his solitary life and lived happily among friends - although this part of the story hasn't been officially confirmed yet.

I enjoyed this story and consider it a worthy read for kids of any age.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Boy and the Travelling Cheese by Junia Wonders

Rating: WORTHY!

Another odd and wonderful tale from the same story-teller who created Boy and the very Lonely Pony, and The Roll-Away Pumpkin, both of which I reviewed positively. This one is about a boy who wants to grow to man-sized proportions so he can have an adventure like grown-ups do. In order to aid this quest to grow big, Boy’s grandfather sends him a huge wheel of cheese that he made himself. The problem is, since everyone wants a taste of this magnificent cheese, will Boy even get to taste it himself, much less eat enough to grown big enough for an adventure? The answer to that question is the real joy of this story.

I read this on my phone and the text was large enough to be read without eyestrain except for one or two pages where it was superimposed over the stone wall of a house or over an orange sky, which made it pretty much illegible! The images refused to swipe larger, too, which was irritating. That said, though, the book was fun and inventive and stimulating, with fun illustrations by Divin Meir, and this is what’s important when it comes to stories for kids. I recommend this one.

Monday, July 13, 2015

The Roll-Away Pumpkin by Junia Wonders

Rating: WORTHY!

Is a Pumpkin considered kin folk of a pump? Is there some significance in the initial letters of this story's title spelling "trap"? Neither of these idiotic questions will be answered in this book, but that's no reason at all not to love it. I enjoyed and positively reviews Junia Wonders's Boy and the Very Lonely Pony back at the end of June 2015, and this story was equally charming.

The artwork here is by a different artist, Daniela Volpari, but it's equal to anything on the other book. Indeed, it has its own charm, and is very elegantly executed. The story is simple and perfect for the young age group this book is aimed at, and highly suitable for the fall, which is not as far away as you might think.

A young girl loses control of a pumpkin - and I'm tempted to say if I had a dime for every time that's happened to me..., but that's all pie in the sky, and it doesn't help to be prideful about it because summer comes before a fall, as we all know.

In a chase rather reminiscent of the ending to an old Benny Hill show, not only the girl goes running pell-mell after her errant pumpkin; pretty much everyone she passes during her frantic chase joins in with her, until a veritable parade of people is in pursuit which is perfect since today was actually supposed to be the local vegetable parade, and what better way to end all the exertion than to sit down with a nice bowl of fresh pumpkin soup? Orange you glad it all ended without anyone becoming browned off?

I recommend this delightful story.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Boy and the Very Lonely Pony by Junia Wonders

Title: Boy and the Very Lonely Pony
Author: Junia Wonders
Publisher: Gmür Verlag (no website found)
Rating: WORTHY!

Illustrated by Divin Meir (no website found)

This is an odd and quirky story about a lonely boy, but nonetheless enjoyable for that. By the way, before I get started, the text in particular, but also the illustrations are a wee bit small to appreciate on a smart phone (although it is do-able), so I'd recommend the print version or reading this on a pad or tablet.

The boy is largely confined to the house, and therefore enjoys gazing out of the window for the beauty of the world outside and for anything else of interest which he sees out there. This is how he first encounters the pony, which to him looks quite sad.

When the boy is getting ready for bed, he notices that the pony is looking back at him, and each seems to recognize that something is missing in the other. Seeing the white pony glowing in the stark Moonlight, the boy feels compelled to go visit.

At least the boy can go outside. The pony can't go anywhere. Not until the boy rides it and they escape the confining boredom of the pasture and take a night-time tour of the local district. As the sun comes up they return home as friends and fellow travelers.

I liked this book for its simplicity and the gorgeously colored images. I recommend it.