Oliver Jeffers graduated from The University of Ulster in 2001 with First Class honours. His outstanding talent has been recognised by several high-profile awards, including the Nestle Children's Book Prize Gold Award. 'Lost and Found' animation was broadcast on Channel 4. Oliver lives and works in Brookyln, New York.
In an exuberantly absurd tale that recalls the old woman who swallowed a fly, a boy named Floyd goes to ridiculous lengths to remove his kite from a tree. Floyd tosses his sneakers, then his cat, into the leafy branches, and when they get stuck, too, he fetches a ladder. "He was going to sort this out once and for all... and up he threw it. I'm sure you can guess what happened." Each spread pictures Floyd pitching another item into the tree and growing increasingly frustrated: a bike, a kitchen sink, the milkman, a fire truck, and "a curious whale, in the wrong place at the wrong time... and they all got stuck." Jeffers (The Incredible Book Eating Boy) pictures the extravagant accumulation in abstract pencil-and-gouache doodles, with hand-lettered text to set a conversational tone. The tall, narrow format reinforces the tree's height in comparison to small, stick-figure Floyd. Jeffers's droll resolution-the kite comes down, although afterward Floyd "could have sworn there was something he was forgetting"-is testament to the boy's single-mindedness and the chaos he leaves in his wake. Ages 3-5. (Nov.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Stuck is perhaps the most impressive picture book published this year... Brilliantly silly." Daily Telegraph
Praise for The Incredible Book Eating Boy:
'Mouth-wateringly irresistible' The Guardian
'This is a book that children will devour' The Observer
Praise for Lost and Found:
'A heart-warming story' The Guardian
Praise for How to Catch a Star:
'The best recent picture book by light years, is stylishly spellbinding.' Telegraph
'Hail to new talent... If only all picture books could be this good.' The Bookseller
Praise for The Heart and the Bottle:
'Profoundly moving' The Irish Times
PreS-Gr 2-Floyd has a problem: his kite is stuck in a tree. Employing kid logic, he throws his favorite shoe to dislodge the wayward object-to no avail. The imaginative hero fetches a host of other items: a friend's bicycle, the kitchen sink, a long-distance lorry, the house across the street, a curious whale ("in the wrong place at the wrong time"). Alas, each item joins its predecessors, lodged in the foliage. Jeffers's deadpan descriptions and the ludicrous scale of Floyd's selections are laugh-out-loud hilarious. As the child carries the house on his head, his neighbor leans out the window, commenting, simply: "Floyd?" Then there is the incongruity between expectation and reality. When he retrieves a ladder, firemen, and finally a saw, readers will surely expect climbing or cutting, but no. Everything gets pitched up, including the light bulb that hovers over the child's head, just before he achieves success. The tree, which continually changes color (and therefore, mood), is a dense, scribbled, layered specimen, perfect for harboring the odd assemblage. The text appears to be hand-lettered, as if written by a youngster. In concert with the quirky, mixed-media caricatures, supported by stick legs, it yields a childlike aesthetic sure to tickle the funny bones of its target audience-and of the adults who share the story with youngsters.-Wendy Lukehart, Washington DC Public Library (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.