Scatterbrain Sam

Scatterbrain Sam

5.0 1
by Ellen Jackson, Matt Faulkner, Matt Failkner
     
 

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Will capture your heart and tickle your funny bone.

Our kind-hearted hero wears an alarm clock instead of a watch and eats his soup with a pitchfork. Is it any wonder his nickname is Scatterbrain Sam? Finally fed up with his neighbors' whispering and odd looks, Sam enlists the mysterious Widder Woman and his gregarious friend Maizie Mae to help him fix his

Overview

Will capture your heart and tickle your funny bone.

Our kind-hearted hero wears an alarm clock instead of a watch and eats his soup with a pitchfork. Is it any wonder his nickname is Scatterbrain Sam? Finally fed up with his neighbors' whispering and odd looks, Sam enlists the mysterious Widder Woman and his gregarious friend Maizie Mae to help him fix his scattered brains.

Imaginative illustrations and a colorful cast of animals and townspeople create an unforgettable setting for this rollicking folktale adaptation.

About the Author:
A former kindergarten teacher, Ellen Jackson is now the award-winning author of over thirty-five books for children, including Turn of the Century and Cinder Edna (Lothrop). She lives in Santa Barbara, California.

About the Illustrator:
Matt Faulkner graduated from Rhode Island School of Design and has done work for The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and Forbes Magazine. He lives in Birmingham, Michigan, and teaches art at the Center for Creative Studies in Detroit.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
An eccentric with a heart of gold, on a search for more smarts, discovers that brains aren't the most important thing in this "rollicking version of an old Welsh folktale," said PW. Ages 5-9. (Feb.)
Children's Literature
Sam "didn't know nothing about nothing." He decides to ask the Widder Woman for a potion to fix his brains. But he has some problem obtaining the ingredients she requires for the glue stew she is mixing. Along comes Maizie Mae, who has set her cap for Sam. She helps him solve the Widder Woman's riddles, and after a wild accident with that stew, ends up in his arms where she belongs. Faulkner's colored drawings set appealing personalities in environments rich with details beyond the text and with a sly sense of humor. Clothing and architecture suggest small-town America in the 1930s, with charming Maizie May flying a vintage plane and the Widder Woman a surprisingly deft mechanic. A Source Note explains the changes made in the original folk tale. 2001, A Charlesbridge Imprint/Whispering Coyote, $15.95. Ages 4 to 8. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
Gr 3-6-Scatterbrain Sam is the distant down-home cousin of "Morgan and the Pot of Brains," a Welsh tale told by Ellen Pugh. This adaptation is a funny, folksy tall tale filled with exaggeration and sly humor. It is set in mid-20th-century America, and Jackson has freely updated and modified the old story. Sam is so scatterbrained, "he didn't know nothing about nothing," so he asks Widder Woman to help fix his brains. She offers a glue-stew remedy for which the young man must provide the flavoring with things that he loves. When that proves to be too difficult, he is given riddles to solve and only with the help of Maizie Mae, a golden-haired aviatrix with her own stunt plane, does Sam begin to find the solution. When Maizie falls into the sticky concoction, Sam follows the glue flood through town and finally realizes what he truly loves. He takes the Widder's advice and marries Maizie and they fly off together into the sunset. This is a rollicking good tale with exuberant cartoonlike watercolor-and-gouache paintings. Faulkner covers each spread with warm colors, visual jokes, and intriguing details. Boxes of text neatly carry the story across the pages. This book is both clever and full of energy. It begs to be read aloud and will be a delightful addition to most collections.-Beth Tegart, Oneida City Schools, NY Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Faulkner's (Black Belt, not reviewed, etc.) art waxes more riotously exuberant than ever in Jackson's heavily modified Welsh folktale. Though Sam seems happy enough being a total doofus, the town gossip finally wears him down to the point of asking a "widder" conversant with "lotions and potions and whatnot," for some smarts. Brawny, brown-skinned, and distinctly larger than life, she sets to stirring up a huge pot of Glue Stew to stick Sam's brains together, sending him out for ingredients that she describes in impenetrable (to Sam, at least) riddles. Luckily, Sam has a riddle-solving friend in fresh-faced barnstormer Maizie Mae. Faulkner turns even the hills and buildings into interested spectators as Sam, a Hugh Grant lookalike, shuttles back and forth between the Widder's barber-pole-striped lighthouse and enlightening, increasingly romantic rendezvous with Maizie Mae. Finished at last, the Glue Stew spills gooily through town, bringing the young folk to a satisfying clinch in front of the church door. Belly laughs and bravos will punctuate every reading of this fresh, funny recasting. (Picture book/folktale. 7-9)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780881063950
Publisher:
Charlesbridge Publishing, Inc.
Publication date:
02/15/2003
Edition description:
REPRINT
Pages:
32
Product dimensions:
8.30(w) x 10.80(h) x 0.20(d)
Age Range:
5 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

Ellen Jackson grew up in Glendale, California, where her mother worked for Walt Disney Studios. Her childhood interests centered around reading. She has traveled in Europe and South America, including the Amazon jungle and the Galapagos Islands

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Scatterbrain Sam 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Sam, as you might guess, is a little lacking in the gray matter department. Why, the fellow is so addlepated that he carries an alarm clock instead of a wristwatch, and travels to town by attaching a sail to his truck. Well, Mensa candidate or not he's still one of the nicest boys around. But, he would like to have some help with his brains so he consults Widder Woman who promises, 'I got something that'll fix your noggin, boy. You ever hear tell of glue stew?' Sam's pleased as he thinks that potion will glue his brains together. That's especially important now because Sam is smitten with Maizie, so taken with her that when he sees her he grins 'like a possum in a peanut patch.' One problem is that Maizie's as smart as a whip, and Sam is not. Second problem is that Maizie topples into the pot of glue stew. Young readers learn that even the most daunting obstacles can be overcome with courage, tenacity, and a heart of gold!