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In an exuberant paean to imagination and daydreaming, Morton, first seen in If I Had a Dragon (S & S, 2006), returns as a bored baseball outfielder. He begins to imagine himself as a lion, monkey, giraffe, hippo, etc. Each baseball-capped creature has a certain wacky panache that is destroyed as the page is turned and the critter encounters a predator or unexpected situation that makes it much less palatable to be that animal. Undeterred, Morton imagines himself as another denizen of the jungle until he morphs into a walrus ("Wait a minute! Walruses don't live in the jungle!") and returns to reality as his teammates urge him to catch an incoming fly ball. The full-color pen, ink, pencil, and digitally rendered art is full of frenetic stop-action fun and sprawls across the spreads. The illustrator uses multiple perspectives to give free rein to a boy's imagination, and the cartoon characters will appeal to kids who enjoy fast action. With a text simple enough to entice new readers and a story silly enough to keep storytime groups entertained, this jungle jaunt will find a place in many collections.-Marge Loch-Wouters, La Crosse Public Library, WI
Posted March 23, 2013
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