Prather’s Pick: An interactive picture book |

Prather’s Pick: An interactive picture book

Diane Prather/For Craig Press

Kids love electronic gadgets so they’re sure to enjoy this week’s picture book. “This book is out of control” — with no capitalization — was written and illustrated by Richard Byrne. The book is published by Henry Holt and Company (2016).

A young boy named Ben has a new remote-controlled fire truck, and he wants to show it off so he follows the “Bella’s Street” sign to Bella’s house. Bella is a young girl about Ben’s age.

Bella has a dog, a great big dog that is about the size of Ben and Bella together. In fact, his head doesn’t even fit in the dog bed. He’s asleep when Ben knocks on the door. Bella goes outside and closes the door.

Ben takes the truck out of the box and shows Bella the remote control with ten buttons. He wants to show Bella what happens to the ladder on top of the truck when he pushes the “up” button. However, nothing happens—not to the truck anyway.

Since the door is closed the kids don’t notice that the dog is suddenly lifted out of his bed. (Boy, is he surprised!) 

Since the “up” button didn’t work, Ben pushes “spin.” Again, nothing happens to the truck, but the poor dog starts spinning, much as if he were in a washing machine. The reader can see the dog’s startled eyes in the very center of the “spin cycle” and feet and tail as the dog spins out of control. 

Bella suggests that Ben try to get the toy to make noise so he pushes the “siren” button. The truck is quiet, but the dog, that is still a bit dizzy, starts to “woo-woo,-woo.” Bella, who apparently can hear the dog through the door, says that the truck is a little quiet and suggests that Ben push the “voice” button. 

Now the dog, who is still up in the air, opens the door and calls for help. He says that the book is out of control. Ben and Bella realize that the dog is talking. The dog says that he’s stuck. He wants Ben to push a button to get him down. Ben tries, but now he and Bella are up in the air with the dog.

Now it’s the reader’s turn to help. There’s plenty of fun left in the book and a challenge for the reader at the end.

This is a fun book, indeed. Author/illustrator Richard Byrne has also written “We’re in the wrong book” and “This book just ate my dog!”

“This book is out of control” is in the new book display in the children’s room at the Craig branch of Moffat County Libraries. It costs $16.99 in hardcover if you wish to purchase it.

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