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An Anaconda Ate My Homework
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An Anaconda Ate My Homework

by Alice Schertle, Aaron Renier (Illustrator)
What do you do when your teacher assigns you ten pages of homework, a raptor swoops down and grabs you, and you suddenly find yourself all alone in the jungle about to be swallowed by a python? When you're Digby, the solution to every problem is in your backpack.


What do you do when your teacher assigns you ten pages of homework, a raptor swoops down and grabs you, and you suddenly find yourself all alone in the jungle about to be swallowed by a python? When you're Digby, the solution to every problem is in your backpack.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Imagination and a backpack full of gear trump uncreative paperwork in this high-energy comic book-style escapade. The story opens in a classroom where pale, gray-haired "Mr. Crumbundle, known to some as Crummy," overloads his students with homework. Digby stuffs the assignment in his yellow backpack on his way out. "But, as luck would have it," Digby's eventful trip home precludes Crummy's after-school plan, as Digby and his silent sidekick, a resourceful green frog, are plucked from the sidewalk by a "Gigantic Repulsive Raptor," swallowed by an anaconda and captured by a gorilla. Fortunately, Digby carries a treasure trove of items (bubblegum, party balloons, a basketball) that save him at every turn. Renier (Spiral-Bound) favors a sinister ink line reminiscent of cartoonist Charles Burns's work, and he loads every millimeter of space with activity. Schertle's (Little Blue Truck) exposition and voice-bubble dialogue keep the hair-raising, humorous adventure at a fever pitch ("Guts 'n' innards! Yuck!" Digby shouts from inside the snake). Digby's exploits put "the dog ate my homework" to shame. Ages 4-8.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Children's Literature - Anita Barnes Lowen
Homework! Eleven pages of homework! "This'll take ALL DAY! We won't have time for ANY FUN STUFF!" A very gloomy Digby stuffed the papers into his backpack and started for home. "But as luck would have it, when Digby turned the corner... a Gigantic Repulsive Raptor swooped..." down and carried Digby off. Luckily the raptor was terribly ticklish; when Digby poked him with his umbrella, the raptor dropped Digby...PLOOMF!...right onto a cliff top and into a nest filled with baby raptors. Fortunately Digby had a wad of already-been-chewed bubble gum in his backpack and used it to rappel down the side of the cliff...until PLOOSH!...the gum snapped and Digby fell into a river where a very hungry anaconda swallowed him for lunch. "Luckily, Digby carried a complete line of party balloons in his backpack..." And BANG! BURP! he was free. After a gorilla, a tiger, and a rogue elephant, an on-the-spot television news team later whisks Digby off to meet the president of the United States to tell her about his misadventures. But what about those eleven pages of unfinished homework? Is Digby going to have a good excuse? An out-of-the-frying-pan-and-into-the-fire comic book style adventure filled with action-packed illustrations and starring a resourceful kid with a backpack full of essentials. Reviewer: Anita Barnes Lowen
School Library Journal
Gr 3–5—When Digby complains about a lengthy homework assignment, Mr. Crumbundle promptly tacks on an additional 10 pages for him. On his way home, the boy is snatched up by a gigantic repulsive raptor, swallowed by an anaconda, and tossed around by a playful gorilla. Each time he finds himself in danger, Digby finds the solution to his problem in his seemingly bottomless backpack. Riding on the back of a rogue elephant, he eventually arrives at the Oval Office, where his homework is officially canceled by presidential order. Schertle's over-the-top text and zany situations will appeal to children who enjoy the similarly frenetically paced adventures in Jon Scieszka's "Time Warp Trio" series (Viking). Renier's colorful cartoon art lends a graphic feel to the offering. Numerous text balloons supplement the narrative, and the action is displayed in boxes with varying directionality throughout. Far too much is happening to make this suitable for group presentation, but it will certainly find its audience.—Grace Oliff, Ann Blanche Smith School, Hillsdale, NJ

Product Details

Publication date:
Product dimensions:
8.20(w) x 11.36(h) x 0.40(d)
AD560L (what's this?)
Age Range:
7 - 9 Years

Meet the Author

Alice Schertle is a children's poet and the author of many books for children, including Very Hairy Bear, illustrated by Matt Phelan, and Little Blue Truck, illustrated by Jill McElmurry. She lives in Western Massachussetts.

Aaron Renier is the author and illustrator of Spiral Bound and illustrator for the series, The Knights' Tales. He was the recipient of the 2005 Will Eisner Comic Industry Award for Talent Deserving Wider Recognition. A native of Green Bay, Wisconsin, he now lives in Brooklyn.

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