Synopses & Reviews
Anthony Browne is a recent British Childrens Laureate and has received many awards for his work, including the Hans Christian Andersen Award for his services to childrens literature. He has written and illustrated more than forty books, including Little Beauty, One Gorilla, and How Do You Feel? Anthony Browne lives in Kent, England.
"A nervous boy named Joe is on his way to a birthday party, but he has lost his invitation and doesn't know the house number. Panels in blue wash show Joe's mother reassuring him as they walk down the street, considering each house. 'What if there's someone at the party I don't know?' Joe asks. 'You'll be fine,' she says. The magic is in the dreamlike scenes that appear in each successive house's window are they real, or Joe's anxieties made manifest? The first reveals an elderly couple sitting, somnolent, in their front room; a closer look suggests they might be aliens. An enormous elephant looms in the next window. Further along, schoolboys reminiscent of Tweedledee and Tweedledum shove a companion into a teapot. 'What if they play scary games?' Joe asks. A roomful of Brueghel characters heaves and churns. Yet the love between Joe and his mother always keeps his fears from overtaking him, and when Joe finds the party at last, it's his mother who has a moment of anxiety. Beautifully and subtly executed, with Brown's extraordinary illustrative powers at work throughout. Ages 5 8." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
About the Author
Young worriers will relate to — and be comforted by —this tale of a boys anxiety as he heads to his first big party.
What if Joe doesnt like the party hes going to? What if he doesnt like the food or the games or the people? As Joe and his mom walk down the darkening street, Joes imagination starts to run wild. And as they search for the right place, he wonders "what if . . ." at each house, peeking in to see some surprising sights. From the award-winning former British Childrens Laureate Anthony Browne comes a picture book whose slyly bewitching setup unfolds to a reassuring ending.