Straight to the Pole


Who will win the battle of boy against blizzard?

Freezing wind.

Bone-chilling ice.

Knee-deep snow drifts.

A lone figure battles for every step in a terrible storm, ...
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Who will win the battle of boy against blizzard?

Freezing wind.

Bone-chilling ice.

Knee-deep snow drifts.

A lone figure battles for every step in a terrible storm, determined to reach the distant Pole. Nothing will stop him from reaching his goal—except his own overactive imagination.

A boy who is struggling through snow to get to school is about to give up but then hears some good news from his friends.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

School Library Journal Best Book of the Year

Chicago Public Library's Best of the Best Award

The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (starred review)

Not only does O'Malley display complete mastery of tongue-in-cheek, he's got the martyred attitude of reluctant schoolgoers nailed, from the suffering slouch to the dire last words, 'I told Mom this would happen.'
Publishers Weekly
In PW's words, "Young fans of irony-fortified humor will get a hoot out of O'Malley's snowy spoof." Ages 4-8. (Oct.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
A young boy trudges through knee-deep drifts of snow, pushing, pushing, pushing onward. The storm worsens and he feels he can't go on. But at his darkest moment, two friends appear. Lo and behold, they tell him that school is closed for the day. What initially appears to be boy vs. the elements turns out to be a funny book about a boy on his way to the bus stop using every bit of histrionics in his arsenal. The pole is not the North or South pole but the bus stop pole. Young school children will love this preposterous tale of derring-do. O'Malley's illustrations are bright, clear, and engaging. 2003, Walker, Ages 4 to 7.
— Joan Kindig, Ph.D.
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 3-Despite a raging blizzard, a boy valiantly trudges toward his destination, until his friends find him and announce that school has been canceled. Swirling watercolors complement this humorous ode to an overactive imagination. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
A muffled figure leans into the wind, struggling through drifts and swirls of snow, falling forward to crawl on hands and knees to reach The Pole at last . . . no, not that sort of Pole: the kind with a sign on top. And what does that sign read? O'Malley keeps mum until two friends come out of the mists to the rescue, with news that school's been cancelled. In the last picture, an abandoned backpack rests beneath a "Bus Stop." A short but suitably melodramatic text-"Can't go on. CAN'T . . . GO . . . on. (I told Mom this would happen)"-accompanies this epic journey, captured in a succession of rolling, full-bleed, zero-visibility scenes. Never has the daily venture to school been so fraught-if only in the venturer's mind-than in this natural companion for Patricia Lakin's hilarious Snow Day (2002), which puts a very different twist on a similar scenario. (Picture book. 6-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780802795700
  • Publisher: Walker & Company
  • Publication date: 10/1/2006
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 10.92 (w) x 8.46 (h) x 0.11 (d)

Meet the Author

KEVIN O'MALLEY is the co-author and illustrator of the popular Miss Malarkey series as well as the award-winning Once Upon a Cool Motorcycle Dude and the national bestseller Gimme Cracked Corn and I Will Share. He lives in Baltimore, Maryland.

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