Amazing -- Brilliant -- Humble
Since ancient times, one question has endured in the hearts and minds of children: Why do I have to make my bed if it's just going to get messed up again? Now, Wade Bradford takes readers on a trip through time for a humorous look at how bed-making has evolved throughout history. Using examples of household tasks that might have been performed in colonial America, in ancient Egypt, by Vikings, and so on, this clever examination of chore lore eventually reveals the answer to this age-old question. (Hint: Mothers throughout history have always had a ready response.) This book makes history so much fun, kids won't even realize they're learning.
Publisher's Weekly: Why is it that, throughout the ages, kids' chores are never considered complete unless they also make their beds? Bradford, a children's playwright making his book debut, and van der Sterre (Feivel's Flying Horses) have compiled a terrific people's history, moving backward in time with generation after generation of child asking the titular question. "Me already clean cave!" says a prehistoric boy to his harried, leopard-skin clad mother. "Me hunt mammoth! Me dust stalagmites. Me make fire! Why me have to make bed? It just get messed up again!" But centuries of pleading have clearly done no good, because the irrefutable reply is always the same: "Because I said so." While playing up the timelessness and universality of the human condition (at least as far as chores are concerned), the text and pictures underscore the evolving demands and trappings of domestic life. With its clever premise, keenly observed visual comedy, and easygoing pedagogy (an excellent afterword draws more directly on scholarship), this book deserves a place on the shelves next to the Magic School Bus series. Ages 4–7. (Feb.)
"This lively picture book offers a great way to talk to kids about history: not the statesmen and generals but the lives of ordinary people at home."
"A clever history book likely to spark conversations about times gone by."
"This is the best book ever written!!!! In your face, James Joyce! IN YOUR FACE!!!"
I am represented by the amazingly able, astoundingly angelic Abigail Samoun of Red Fox Literary. With her guidance, I have been developing several new picture books. Also, I am in the drafting phase of a middle-grade fantasy/adventure called EVERDYM. And, I am about one-third of they way through the first draft of another middle grade novel: CAMP OMIGOSH.