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The Crocodile Bluesby Coleman Polhemus
Synopses & Reviews
A quirky mystery featuring jazzy artwork and intriguing gatefolds! This near-wordless story is so much fun that youll be improvising aloud as the plot unfolds.
It begins with an egg (no ordinary egg) and an unsuspecting fellow. And then with a CRACK — and a furtive peek in the fridge — this offbeat story is off and running! Before we know it, our hero is hiding under the bed. Next he is fleeing out the door and setting himself up in some safe new digs, until — swoosh — a strange invitation arrives. Both humorously retro and wholly original, with very few words and plenty of double takes, THE CROCODILE BLUES is a book with creative bite that will leave readers anything but blue.
"Jazzy stencil shapes and five droll gatefolds lend novelty to this near-wordless story that features a mysterious croc. The pleasant but undistinguished plot is the machinery for the main attraction, Polhemus's (Daemon Hall) high-contrast, silkscreen-style digital imagery, in saturated shades of gray, royal blue and electric yellow on white. First, readers meet a silhouetted man and his pet cockatoo, strolling home with a grocery basket. The man's loose, swingy limbs and jaunty fedora imply carefree existence. Then, on a white wall, the man and bird notice a sign, 'Eggs.' One square page unfolds into three panels as the man approaches an ovoid vending machine and inserts a coin. Holding a single egg, he sashays on his way, a trail of musical notes implying the cockatoo's cheerful whistle. That night, awakened by an onomatopoeic 'crack crack crack crack,' the characters discover eggshells on the kitchen floor and a grinning crocodile in their fridge. Their wide eyes glow against the midnight colors, and they exchange a meaningful glance before exiting their apartment. Later, they receive an invitation to the building, now the chic Blue Crocodile nightclub. Unlike some wordless artists (e.g., Mitsumasa Anno), Polhemus produces a unilayered story, and a few readings may exhaust the linear narrative. But admirers of Richard McGuire's Night Becomes Day will see a similar aesthetic at work in Polhemus's sleek digital designs, and reward them with a lengthier look. Ages 3-6. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
Both humorously retro and wholly original, with very few words and plenty of double takes, this quirky mystery with creative bite will leave readers anything but blue. Illustrations.
About the Author
Coleman Polhemus, who says he cant remember a time when he didnt draw, has worked in commercial illustration and produced fine art in a variety of media. Born in Alabama, he currently lives in Australia.
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