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Todd's TV
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Todd's TV

by James Proimos
 

This is Todd.

These are Todd's parents.

And this is Todd's TV.

Todd's parents are always busy. But Todd's TV isn't busy. It just sits there. So one day, Todd's TV decides to lend a helping hand. This is the heartwarming story of that day, and what happened afterward. You'll laugh, you'll cry—but most of all, you'll be giving your TV a break. It probably

Overview

This is Todd.

These are Todd's parents.

And this is Todd's TV.

Todd's parents are always busy. But Todd's TV isn't busy. It just sits there. So one day, Todd's TV decides to lend a helping hand. This is the heartwarming story of that day, and what happened afterward. You'll laugh, you'll cry—but most of all, you'll be giving your TV a break. It probably needs it.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Convincing kids to turn off the TV isn't easy, but with droll humor as his spoonful of sugar, Proimos (Paulie Pastrami Achieves World Peace) might win them over. Like Jonathan Swift, Proimos carries the book's absurd plot to the extreme: Todd's busy parents often dump him in front of the TV, and one night when they're debating who will take Todd to a parent-teacher conference, the TV booms, “I'LL DO IT.” As Todd's parents relinquish their responsibilities, the TV ends up making Todd pancakes, giving him “heart-to-heart advice,” taking him on vacation, and finally offering to adopt him. Proimos's witty three-color cartoons are especially delightful, portraying Todd's parents' inept attempts to take back control (even dressing up as a TV). But it's Todd who simply (and somewhat inexplicably) suggests turning off the TV, leading to better reading, listening, and grades, as well as Todd feeling “more loved than he ever had in his life.” There's some serious parental guilt-tripping in the text (“Parents are busy people. They can't spend every minute with their child”), but Proimos's humor should charm adults as well as kids. Ages 4-8. (May)
Children's Literature - Phyllis Kennemer
Todd loves his parents, but he loves his TV more. The reason is obvious. Todd spends a lot more time with the TV than he does with his always busy parents. A parent-teacher conference is coming up and neither Todd's mom nor his dad want to take time off to go. The TV offers to take Todd to the conference and his parents agree. Then the TV begins fulfilling other parental roles. He tucks Todd in at night and makes pancakes for his breakfast. He drives Todd to school and gives him heart-to-heart advice. He even takes Todd on vacations. When the TV announces that he is thinking about adopting Todd, the parents are outraged. They try many tricks to regain Todd's affection, but it is up to Todd to suggest the best solution. He demonstrates the use of the power button. Behold! The TV can be turned off. Now Todd and his parents have quality time together. The message is clear, although the book seems to be aimed at adults more than for children. Illustrations in shades of gray with generous accents of orange contribute to the over-the-top presentation. Reviewer: Phyllis Kennemer, Ph.D.
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2—With broad strokes and witty slapdashery, Proimos's light cartoon art and plotline carry some weighty themes. Readers are introduced to diminutive, cheerful Todd, his too-busy-for-quality-time parents, and his increasingly nurturing television set. "Todd loved his parents. But he had grown much closer to his TV." Only a few pages in, some adult readers will be shifting uncomfortably. The spread featuring Todd, his eyes unnaturally large and glazed over on one side, and the huge TV facing him on the other, won't ease their discomfort a whit. At this point, the author jumps into a hilariously exaggerated focal plot that manages to ease the tension and intensify the message. It all starts when neither parent is available to attend Todd's parent-teacher conference—and the TV volunteers. Amusing cartoon drawings in shades of gray, black, and persimmony-red against a white background and a satiric twist at the story's end further enhance this funny-scary cautionary tale. It's a hoot.—Susan Weitz, formerly at Spencer-Van Etten School District, Spencer, NY
Kirkus Reviews
Subtle as a falling safe, Proimos drops a pair of particularly clueless parents on a boy who's anything but a passive victim. So busy and self-involved are Todd's mother and father that they're actually relieved when the household TV offers to go to the lad's parent-teacher conference, drive him to school, cook breakfast and even take him on vacations. They do finally put their foot (feet) down when the TV expresses an intention to open adoption proceedings, but their efforts to show who's boss are ineffectual until Todd clues them in to the TV's power switch. Quality time ensues, and Todd improves so much at school that he wins-a laptop. Using thick, irregular lines and a palette of gray and garish red-orange, the author illustrates the tale in an appropriately stripped-down way, putting confident smiles on Todd and on the screens of both the blocky, old-style TV and the laptop and largely confused looks on the faces of the grown-ups. Todd's emotional detachment makes a nice change from other alarmist tales of boob-tube slavery, but it doesn't make the book any less preachy. (Picture book. Parents)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780061709852
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
04/27/2010
Pages:
40
Sales rank:
1,277,432
Product dimensions:
9.20(w) x 9.20(h) x 0.40(d)
Lexile:
AD480L (what's this?)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

James Proimos is the author and illustrator of many books for children. He lives with his family and TV in Maryland.

James Proimos is the author and illustrator of many books for children. He lives with his family and TV in Maryland.

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