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Sneaky Weasel

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He tries to feed you to a cat, tapes you upside down to a chalkboard, and causes you to be very, very itchy. And when you don’t show up at the extrafancy party he’s throwing for himself, he can’t understand Why! Not only is Weasel totally sneaky—he just doesn’t get what a rat he is!

In this hilarious picture-book debut, a sneaky weasel finds that his tricks have left him with plenty of power, lots of fancy stuff, and absolutely no friends. Can this very bad weasel learn how to ...

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Overview

He tries to feed you to a cat, tapes you upside down to a chalkboard, and causes you to be very, very itchy. And when you don’t show up at the extrafancy party he’s throwing for himself, he can’t understand Why! Not only is Weasel totally sneaky—he just doesn’t get what a rat he is!

In this hilarious picture-book debut, a sneaky weasel finds that his tricks have left him with plenty of power, lots of fancy stuff, and absolutely no friends. Can this very bad weasel learn how to be good? (But, you know, not sickeningly good.) And aren’t we all at least a little bit Weasel-y? C’mon, you know you are. Just a little bit?

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Starred Review, Publishers Weekly, February 16, 2009:
"[Shaw's] gangly ink drawings are amplified with funny visual asides ..., while the quirky typography imbues the narration with a dry lilt."

Review, People Magazine, April 6, 2009:
"A varmint whose wiles have earned him stuff, but no friends learns to be good– "but, you know, not sickeningly good."
Starred Review, School Library Journal, June 2009:
"Sneaky Weasel has a wholesome moral mixed into abundant, sly humor ... It needs to be read and read again to ingest the bounty of visual jokes and lovable malice."

Publishers Weekly

When the eponymous "nasty, measly" antihero of Shaw's authorial debut invites everyone to a party "to boast about his incredible castle, fast car and huge swimming pool," he discovers that he has made an offer that is very easy to refuse. Shocked when his previous crimes and pranks are thrown in his face by his victims (he doused Hedgehog with fleas and allowed Shrew to believe he was going to be fed to Weasel's cat), Weasel makes amends and-eventually-learns something about apologizing ("After a while he began to mumble, 'I'm so... so important! No... I'm su... super sneaky?' ") What keeps the story from turning sappy are Shaw's considerable talents. Her gangly ink drawings are amplified with funny visual asides (such as endpapers featuring nasty and nice weasel-themed advertisements), while the quirky typography imbues the narration with a dry lilt (one can almost hear Judi Dench reading it aloud). And it helps that Weasel, whose haughty and sneering demeanor brings to mind Mr. Burns from The Simpsons, is also truly clueless-readers can savor both his callousness and comeuppance. Ages 4-7. (Feb.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Weasel is not only sneaky, but also a bully and a cheat, and "richer than you can possibly imagine." He throws a party to boast of all his wealth, but no one comes. So he sets out to find out why. Rabbit reminds him of how mean he was to him at school. Nervous Rat recalls Weasel ruining his science experiment. Hedgehog is suffering from the fleas that Weasel had delivered to him. As Weasel tries to creep guiltily past Shrew's house, Shrew emphatically states that nobody came to the party because he is "mean and nasty and a bad friend. And you never ever say sorry!" Weasel tries hard to put everything right. The party he has after that is a big success. He has learned his lesson…almost. Shaw's cartoon-y illustrations, done in pen and ink, printmaking techniques, and Photoshop, are scattered over all pages, even the back jacket. Several readings are needed to appreciate all the inventive fun, the many details of signs, costumes, and the characters themselves. The front end pages are crowded with Weasel's ads for nasty items like "organic fleas" and a "sneaky practical joke kit." The ads on the back pages after Weasel's reform are for nice surprises and free money. Weasel's lesson is framed in fun. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal

Gr 1-3

"Weasel was sneaky. He was a bully and a cheat-a nasty, measly Weasel....One day Weasel decided to throw a party to boast about his incredible castle, fast car and huge swimming pool....But no one came." The process by which he is forced to confront and transform himself is hilarious. The bulk of the humor resides in the illustrations: think Edward Gorey in living color. When Sneaky Weasel visits each of his no-show invitees, readers are treated to fantastic perspectives and a plethora of side-splitting details, plus an insert depicting Weasel's rotten trick of dumping fleas down Hedgehog's chimney. Every insert is framed in a manner that suggests these escapades have pride of place in Weasel's memory. Additional highlights include front and back endpapers of newspaperlike ads that display the main character's initial naughtiness and later redemption. Sneaky Weasel has a wholesome moral mixed into abundant, sly humor frosted with a madcap, meandering font. It needs to be read and read again to ingest the bounty of visual jokes and lovable malice.-Susan Weitz, formerly at Spencer-Van Etten School District, Spencer, NY

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780375856259
  • Publisher: Random House Children's Books
  • Publication date: 2/10/2009
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 3 - 7 Years
  • Lexile: AD590L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 8.90 (w) x 10.50 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Hannah Shaw lives in a tiny Cotswold village called Cherington with a blacksmith named Ben and with Ren, a crazy, long-legged dog who thinks he is human. Sneaky Weasel is the first children’s book that Hannah has both written and illustrated.
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