The Barnes & Noble Review
The popular kid who's as flat as a pancake -- and has become a travel ambassador for classrooms around the country -- returns in his second hilarious adventure!
When Stanley Lambchop gets hit with a ball while simultaneously banging his shoulder, his normal, round self turns suddenly board-like. Unfortunately, according to Dr. Dan, Stanley's been smacked in his OBP -- or Osteal Balance Point -- and there's no way of finding it again. Lucky for Stanley, though, his thin condition turns out to be an advantage when Ralph Jones, a college buddy of Mr. Lambchop, puts his body to use as a new spinnaker during a boating race, and a belligerent Emma Weeks needs rescuing from a department store building collapse. But even though Stanley thinks his flatness is set for good, a slap on the shoulder from Flash Tobin and a sudden jab from Emma's elbow restores his OBP, putting his physique back in shape.
With all of the laugh-out-loud humor readers found in Flat Stanley, this planar dude is light years from plain. Jeff Brown's hero will have audiences cheering for him again, while Scott Nash's cartoonish illustrations give him that extra dose of silliness. Stanley Lambchop might lack some physical depth, but he definitely makes up for it in wacky adventures.
Youngsters will welcome the return of favorite characters in an array of beginning chapter books. Stanley Lambchop deflates once more in Stanley, Flat Again, the sixth title in the series by Jeff Brown, illus. by Scott Nash. Whereas the hero flew as a kite in Flat Stanley, here he serves as a spinnaker to win a sailboat race. When a building collapses, he slips beneath the wreckage to save a classmate just before it tumbles down. A paperback version of Flat Stanley, also with illustrations by Nash, is being released simultaneously. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
The Lampchop family sits down every morning for breakfast, but this morning something looks different in the household. Stanley Lampchop comes down to breakfast not truly himself: today he comes down flat. Stanley goes to school and does everything he normally would, but he feels different and a little strange. Although Stanley looks different, most of his classmates think Stanley's flatness is cool. Due to his flat body, Stanley finds himself on the front page of the newspaper many times and becomes the headsail to win a sailboat race. Stanley questions his fame and uniqueness, yet when tragedy strikes, Stanley shows up to become a hero. He saves the day, and things starts to take shape again. A fun adventure story, Brown's novella deals with important issues like the good and bad aspects of being different and sibling rivalry. It offers an exciting fictional story of a boy's strange adventures. As a physically dynamic character, Stanley portrays a normal child's life that becomes different. Stanley works hard to cope with his new flatness and finds a way to be comfortable with his uniquely flat features. Jeff Brown makes interesting word choices and allows readers to be imaginative. Brown incorporates complex words such as "hearsay," "documentation," "vulnerable," and "anatomical" to challenge young readers and to create a new world for his characters. The novel provides an interesting plot that develops into a fun adventure story, keeping readers on their toes. 2003, HarperCollins Publisher,
Leslie Day Gulledge
School Library Journal
Gr 2-4-Stanley Lambchop returns for another adventure that began in Flat Stanley (1964) and continued in Stanley and the Magic Lamp (1996) and Invisible Stanley (1996, all HarperCollins). Stanley has become flat again, and when his little brother tries to inflate him with a basketball pump, it hurts too much to continue. In the episodic plot, the boy is diagnosed by Dr. Dan, participates as a sail in a sailboat race, and executes a dangerous rescue in a collapsed building that only he in his flatness can attempt. Perky black-and-white cartoon art continues the humorous, upbeat tone set by the text. Given the appeal of this popular character, Stanley will expand early chapter-book collections.-Debbie Stewart, Grand Rapids Public Library, MI Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Flattened once more, this time not by a falling bulletin board but a double blow to his elusive "Osteal Balance Point"-or so says family GP Dr. Dan-Stanley Lambchop gets two more chances to play the hero before popping back into shape. First he becomes a human spinnaker in a sailboat race, then he worms his way through the wreckage of a collapsed building to rescue ever-rude classmate Emma Weeks. Alluding to previous episodes, Stanley complains, "Why me? Why am I always getting flat, or invisible, or something?" Mr. Lambchop replies, "But things often happen without there seeming to be a reason, and then something else happens, and suddenly the first thing seems to have had a purpose after all." Perhaps-even if that purpose is just to tread water, as Brown does here. Still, with its cartoon illustrations, well-leaded text and general goofiness, this retread is as likely to draw transitional readers as the perennial favorite Flat Stanley (1964) and its sequels. (Fiction. 8-10)
Read an Excerpt
Stanley, Flat Again!
A Morning Surprise
Mrs. Lambchop was making breakfast. Mr. Lambchop, at the kitchen table, helped by reading bits from the morning paper.
"Here's an odd one, Harriet," he said. "There's a chicken in Sweden that rides a bike."
"So do I George," said Mrs. Lambchop, not really listening.
"Listen to this. 'Merker Building emptied. To be collapsed next week.' Imagine! Eight floors!"
"Poor thing!" Mrs. Lambchop set out plates. "Boys!" she called. "Breakfast is ready!"
Her glance fell upon a row of photographs on the wall above the sink. There was a smiling Stanley, only half an inch thick, his big bulletin board having fallen from the bedroom wall to rest upon him overnight. Next came reminders of the many family adventures that had come after Stanley's younger brother, Arthur, had cleverly blown him round again with a bicycle pump. There were the brothers with Prince Haraz, the young genie who had granted wishes for them all after being accidentally summoned by Stanley from a lamp. There was the entire family with Santa Claus and his daughter, Sarah, taken during a Christmas visit to the North Pole. There was the family again in Washington, D.C., in the office of the President of the United States, who had asked them to undertake a secret mission into outer space. The last picture showed Arthur standing beside a balloon on which Mrs. Lambchop had painted a picture of Stanley's face. The balloon, its string in fact held by Stanley, had been a valuable guide to his presence, since he was invisible at the time. "Boys!" she called again. "Breakfast!"
In their bedroom, Stanley and Arthur had finished dressing.
While Stanley filled his backpack, Arthur bounced a tennis ball. "Let's go," he said. "Here! Catch!"
Stanley had just reached for a book on the shelf by his bed. The ball struck his back as he turned, and he banged his shoulder on a corner of the shelf.
"Sorry," Arthur said. "But let's go, okay? You know how long -- STANLEY!"
"Why are you shouting?" Stanley adjusted his pack. "C'mon! I'm so hungry -- " He paused. "Oh, boy! Arthur, do you see?"
"I do, actually." Arthur swallowed hard.
"You're, you know ... Flat."
The brothers stared at each other.
"The pump?" Stanley said. "It might work again."
Arthur fetched the bicycle pump from their toy chest, and Stanley lay on his bed with the hose end in his mouth.
Arthur gave a long, steady, pump.
Stanley made a face. "That hurts!"
Arthur pumped again, and Stanley snatched the hose from his mouth. "Owww! That really hurts! It wasn't like that before. We'd better stop."
"Now what?" Arthur said. "We can't just hide in here forever, you know."
Mrs. Lambchop's call came again. "Boys! Please come!"
"Do me a favor," Stanley said. "You tell them. Sort of get them ready. okay?"
"Okay," said Arthur, and went to tell.
Arthur stood in the kitchen doorway. "Hey, guess what?" he said.
"Hay is for horses, dear," said Mrs. Lambchop. "Good morning! Breakfast is ready."
"Good morning, Arthur," Mr. Lambchop said from behind his newspaper. "Where's Stanley?"
"Guess what?" Arthur said again.
Mrs. Lambchop sighed. "Oh, all right! I can't guess. Tell."
"Stanley's flat again," said Arthur.
Mr. Lambchop put down his paper.
Mrs. Lambchop closed her eyes. "Flat again? Is that what you said?"
"Yes," said Arthur.
"It's true." Stanley stood now beside Arthur in the doorway. "Just look."
"Good grief!" said Mr. Lambchop. "I can't believe that bulletin board -- "
"It didn't fall on me this time," Stanley said. "I just got flat. Arthur tried to pump me up, like before, but it hurt too much."
"Oh, Stanley!" Mrs. Lambchop ran to kiss him. "How do you feel now?"
"Fine, actually," Stanley said. "Just surprised. Can I go to school?"
Mrs. Lambchop thought for a moment. "Very well. Eat your breakfast. After school we'll hear what Dr. Dan has to say." Stanley, Flat Again!. Copyright © by Jeff Brown. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.