Prather’s Pick: Another popular children’s series
Awhile back this column spotlighted the “Click, Cat, Moo” series of books which are popular with young children. This week’s column features another series of books that children love. The Skippyjon Jones picture books are written and illustrated by Judy Schachner. Both series of books have lively storylines and lovable characters.
Skippyjon Jones is a young Siamese kitten with a big imagination that gets him in trouble with Mama Junebug Jones who is way too busy with her chores and caring for her baby kittens to put up with his antics. Deep down, Skippyjon believes he is a Chihuahua superhero named Skippito Friskito, and most of his imaginary play involves Skippito.
For example, there’s Skippyjon’s plan to become a famous paleontologist. That’s what is on his mind in “Skippyjon Jones and the Big Bones.” As the story begins, Mama Junebug is busy hanging laundry on the clothesline. Her babies, Ju-Ju Bu, Jezebel, and Jilly Boo, are watching from the laundry basket. Meanwhile, Skippyjon is digging in Mrs. Dolly Doohiggy’s garden. He’s not supposed to be there, of course, and if Mrs. Doohiggy’s dog Darwin catches him, the kitten is going to be sorry. Right now Darwin is asleep.
Skippyjon finds what he he’s been digging for—a bone—and races off for the house. He runs right through the sheets hanging on the clothesline. Mama Junebug yells at him. “Hey Pickle Pants (because Skippyjon loves pickles). Don’t run with your mouth full.”
But all Skippyjon wants is to get to his room. He has one thing on his mind—bones and dinosaurs. First, Skippyjon pops a pickle in his mouth. Then he glues the bone to a stuffed animal. He’s making a Skipposaurus, and today he’s going to be a paleontologist.
But just then Mama Junebug comes into the room. She informs Skippyjon that he has to return his “fossils” to Darwin. However, Skippyjon has no intention of returning the bones. Instead , he jumps on the bed and then checks out his image in the mirror. What he sees is a Chihuahua—Skippito Friskito.
He picks up a cape and pulls on a mask.
Skippyjon begins to sing. He’s thinking dinosaurs, and he goes to the one place he always goes when he’s about to have an adventure—deep inside his closet. Today it’s a jungle of prehistoric trees.
Skippyjon picks up the scent of Los Chimichangos. He calls out, “It is I, El Skippito Friskito, the great sword fighter.”
And the adventure begins.
“Skippyjon Jones and the Big Bones” is published by Dutton Children’s Books (2007). This book and others about Skippyjon can be found in the children’s room at the Craig branch of Moffat county Libraries.
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