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by Tony Ross (Illustrator), Jeanne Willis

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Carrie Hane Hung
Poor hippopotamus found a red spot on her bottom. The different animals examine the "spotamus" and make their seemingly professional diagnoses of the problem. They provide an assortment of solutions to help the hippopotamus get rid of the spot. The weasel believes the hippo has the measles and treats it with sunshine and heat. The beaver claims it is jungle fever and prescribes a soot rub. The crocodile tries to cure it with a "shotamus." Unfortunately, all the suggestions do not make the spot disappear. Finally, a discovery is made and it makes for a hilarious ending. Ross' illustrations add to the humor as the hippopotamus tries the different treatments. The line's rhyming patterns changes through the story, seeming to break the rhythm. Willis also plays with the word hippopotamus and creates fun, new rhyming words for the story like hotamus and sootimus or hippolumps and hippoflu. The story is also available in e-book format. Reviewer: Carrie Hane Hung
Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Prepare your tongue to be tied as you read aloud the jolly rhymes and word play telling the tale of Hippopotamus and the spotamus on her bottomus. One by one her animal friends offer their wild diagnoses and treatments, from Weasel and Fox to Beaver, Lion, Shrew, Rhino, Croc, Bear, and Snake. Their ideas range from measles and hippopox to potomumps and hippoflu. The cures tried by the poor hippo include tail in the sun and scrubbing with soot to even a "shotamus," all useless. Then a lad, searching "round alotamus..." for something "...he had forgottamus" brings the crazy tale to a silly but satisfying solution. The anthropomorphic animals have a great time messing with their bulky friend, seen on the jacket/cover writhing in distress, the pesky red patch on her bottomus, as well as on the end pages. Ross's pen and ink and watercolor illustrations effectively reflect the zany humor. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Kirkus Reviews
A mysterious pink spot on Hippo's bum provides the MacGuffin for a lottamus of silly wordplay capped by a deliciously gross denouement. "You sat in a breezle / And caught a diseasel," says Weasel. "There's only one treatment. / Exposing your seatment / To sunshine and heatment." Alas, neither that prescription nor other rhyming diagnoses and remedies provided by Fox ("It's hippopox!"), Beaver, Shrew, Snake and other helpful animals make a spot of difference. The look of worry on Hippo's big, blobby face in Ross' loosely drawn and brushed watercolors changes to a smile only after a small lad wanders by and provides the proper diagnosis: "That's my bubble gum!" he exclaims, pulling it off and proceeding to chew. Look for uproarious responses from young audiences, especially at the final page turn. Eeeew. But in a good way. (Picture book. 5-7)

Product Details

Andersen Press, Limited
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
9.50(w) x 11.20(h) x 0.30(d)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

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