Oh No! Not Again!: (Or How I Built a Time Machine to save History) (Or at Least My History Grade)by Mac Barnett, Dan Santat
Some kids are too smart for their own good...and maybe for everybody else's good. The overly ambitious little girl from Oh No! is back for more. But this time, she doesn't have a humongous problem, she has an EPIC crisis on her hands: a mere A on her history test! There's only one solution: travel back in time to 33,000 B.C. to make her wrong answer/b>
Some kids are too smart for their own good...and maybe for everybody else's good. The overly ambitious little girl from Oh No! is back for more. But this time, she doesn't have a humongous problem, she has an EPIC crisis on her hands: a mere A on her history test! There's only one solution: travel back in time to 33,000 B.C. to make her wrong answer right!
Mac Barnett and Dan Santat's laugh-out-loud sequel to the critically acclaimed Oh No! will be sure to tickle a prehistoric funny bone for fans new and neanderthal alike.
Barnett and Santat reunite with this companion to Oh No! (Or How My Science Project Destroyed the World). This time it's a time machine that goes wrong for the bespectacled heroine. Running with the butterfly effect trope, we see that little (and very big) changes in the past do alter history. Our heroine, after missing a question on her history test, builds a bunny-faced time machine that takes her back to 33,000 BCE. While she is changing history by painting caves in Belgium, two cave dudes make off with her vehicle and do some history-changing of their own. Santat's bright digital illustrations with lots of graphic elements capture the feel of the cinema (complete with a book jacket that converts to a movie poster). Readers will especially enjoy the hapless cave guys who have no idea what to do with paintbrushes and spray paint but seem to know how to drive the time-travel mobile. Whether they are shoving paintbrushes up their noses, spray-painting their faces, or stabbing each other with pencils, readers will find these Cave Stooges irresistible. Other touches, such as the faux Lascaux painting depicting an alien invasion, will allow young readers to feel in on the joke. Careful reading of the final spread, a time transit map that resembles a subway map, is an education in itself. robin l. smith—Horn Book
Gr 1-3 The technical genius from Oh No! (Hyperion, 2010) is aghast at having given a wrong answer on a test. She creates a time machine to take her to Belgium, where she can change history. Then her answer to "In what modern country do we find the oldest cave paintings?" will be correct. At the controls, she has a couple of misses and ends up alongside a fish in 25,000,000 BCE Belgium, then next to Napoleon, before making it to 33,000 BCE. Spotting two Neanderthals, she exclaims, "Get in there and spray some art, Maestros!" They spray paint their faces instead. Taking things into her own hands, the girl enters a cave, arms full of art supplies, and exits in triumph, only to realize that the two took the time machine joyriding. "Oh man. This might affect the history test." The spare text is low key and consists mainly of thought bubbles. The illustrations have wide, black margins above and below large, energetic graphic-novel-style spreads. A closing map of time-travel routes may inspire kids to write their own tales. This picture book strives to evoke a film, and kids with a fast-paced, visual edge and a keen sense of slapstick will devour it. (The dust jacket folds out into a movie poster.) Sara Lissa Paulson, American Sign Language and English Lower School PS 347, New York City—SLJ
In Oh No! (2010), Barnett and Santat introduced an overachieving student whose science-fair robot terrorizes the city in hilarious B-movie fashion. Our super smart scholar is back, this time applying her errant brilliance to the past. To correct the only incorrect answer on her history test, she constructs a time machine and travels back in time, forging a prehistoric cave painting to make world history conform to her mistake. After a few missed calibrations and consequential encounters with a 25,000,000-year-old tetrapod and Napoleon, she arrives at her intended destination just in time to tag her cave and "loan" the time machine to a pair of curious cavemen who wreak some havoc of their own. Both story and pictures ramp up the naturally cinematic quality, with visible striations in the illustrations mimicking celluloid projection and a full-on movie poster on the reverse of the dust jacket. An abundance of clever details and historical allusions make the final punch line extra punchy. Blueprints for the time machine and a fourth-dimension transit map are appended. - Thom Barthelmess—Booklist
Having recovered from the world-destroying science project she created in the first Oh No! (2010), Barnett's overachiever has a new dilemma: Her history test is returned with one point off for incorrect answer. Noting that "Belgium" is not the country where the oldest prehistoric cave paintings exist, she devises a solution completely out of proportion to the problem. Using a "Phun Times" Kiddie Pool as a foundation, she builds a time machine to alter history. After a few glitches (landing in a pre-Neanderthal world and then in the French Revolution), she finds her Belgian cavemen. As in the companion story, the digital compositions are framed with black horizontal borders and marked with white vertical lines to establish a cinematic context. The plot unfolds through speech bubbles, the faux-technical diagrams on graph paper covering the endpapers and the extremely funny actions and expressions of Santat's caricatures. Children will relish the two cavemen's antics: They stick paintbrushes in their noses, chomp on the palette and spray paint each other. The duo gives the transporter a spin while the frustrated scholar decorates the cave herself. She emerges to find one sporting Napoleon's hat, a Roman chariot speeding by and other anachronisms-not to mention an "F" on her test, now that history has been rearranged. Wonderfully ridiculous in premise and execution and abounding in creative touches, this will surely spark student spinoffs. (Picture book. 5-8)—Kirkus
Meet the Author
Mac Barnett (http://macbarnett.com) is a writer living in Oakland, CA. He's also on the board of 826LA, a nonprofit writing and tutoring center, and founder of the Echo Park Time Travel Mart, a convenience store for time travelers (seriously). Billy Twitters and His Blue Whale Problem, his first picture book, was published by Disney*Hyperion Books in June 2009.
Dan Santat (www.dantat.com) is the author and illustrator of Guild of Geniuses and the illustrator of many books, including the Otto Undercover series by Rhea Perlman and The Secret Life of Walter Kitty by Barbara Jean Hicks. He also has an animated series for Disney called The Replacements. His first book with Hyperion, Always Lots of Heinies at the Zoo, published in May 2009. He lives in Southern California.
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