Review: Stuck by Oliver Jeffers

Title: Stuck
Author: Oliver Jeffers
Publication Date: November 10th, 2013
Publisher: Philomel
Genre: Children's
Pages: 32
Source: B&N
Awards: Orbil Prize, Italy 2013


Synopsis (from Goodreads): 
The New York Times bestseller -- a giggle-inducing tale of everything tossed, thrown, and hurled in order to free a kite!

When Floyd's kite gets stuck in a tree, he's determined to get it out. But how? Well, by knocking it down with his shoe, of course. But strangely enough, it too gets stuck. And the only logical course of action . . . is to throw his other shoe. Only now it's stuck! Surely there must be something he can use to get his kite unstuck. An orangutan? A boat? His front door? Yes, yes, and yes. And that's only the beginning. Stuck is Oliver Jeffers' most absurdly funny story since The Incredible Book-Eating Boy. Childlike in concept and vibrantly illustrated as only Oliver Jeffers could, here is a picture book worth rescuing from any tree.


Oliver Jeffers makes art. 

From figurative painting and installation to illustration and picture-book making, his work has been exhibited in New York, Dublin, London, Sydney, Washington DC, Belfast and elsewhere.
A co-founder of the art collective OAR, their exhibitions include 9 days in Belfast, book and the award winning BUILDING.
Illustration clients include Orange UK, Lavazza, Sony PSP, RCA Records, Starbucks, Candy, the Vacuum and Her Royal Majesty the Queen of England.
HarperCollins UK and Penguin USA publish his picture books, including the award-winning Lost and Found and The Incredible Book Eating Boy.

There has always been a strong undercurrent of narrative behind Jeffers's work, but his current interest in making art lies in the anomaly between logical and emotional thinking. 

While striving to find a harmonious balance between form and content, Jeffers is curious about the opposing means by which the world he lives in can be assessed. To explore this he has been drawing parallels between the arts and sciences, as in his recent solo show, Additional Information (exhibited December 2006, in Hill St Belfast), in which figurative oil paintings were over laid with mathematical equations.

        Well this is quite the quirky little book! Here we have a little boy who apparently possesses superhuman strength and the inability to effectively problem-solve. Sounds like a winner for my shelf of "Books to Read to My Future Children!" This pretty much sums it up:

       So this little boy is flying a kite and it gets stuck in a tree. Instead of running to an adult or something plausible like that, he decides to attempt knocking it out of the tree with random objects. He begins with small, normal objects like his shoe...but then things seem to escalate a bit, revealing this kid's apparent superpower:

      After throwing half the zoo and multiple forms of transportation in there, the kite comes out and the little boy proceeds about his business..but he may have forgot something...

This was a pretty cute book. I thought the sketches were appealing in a child-like way and the ludicrous nature of the story made it comical. It lacked a message, so I wouldn't necessarily recommend it for educational purposes, but it is a fun, light read. The font may be difficult to decipher, especially for children, but I love Jeffers' artwork and color scheme.

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