Review: If You Happen To Have a Dinosaur by Linda Bailey & Colin Jack

Title: If You Happen To Have a Dinosaur
Author: Linda Bailey
Ilustrator: Colin Jack
Publication Date: May 13th, 2014
Publisher: Tundra Books
Genre: Children's Picture Book
Pages: 40
ISBN13: 978-1770495685
Source: ARC from Publisher

Synopsis (from Goodreads):
A tongue-in-cheek look at the practical uses of dinosaurs by a dynamic author/illustrator team. 

     If you happen to have a dinosaur, lying around your living room, and you don't know what to do with it ... why don't you use it as a can opener? It will make a terrific nutcracker too! There are oodles of uses for a dinosaur -- from a fine umbrella to an excellent kite and a dandy pillow, not to mention a reliable burglar alarm and the perfect excuse to forget your homework. This delightfully absurd exploration of the domestic uses of dinosaurs -- and the things dinos just aren't good for at all -- is guaranteed to tickle funny bones and spark imaginations. If you read carefully, you'll learn how to make your dinosaur last a very long time.
A | B&N | Gr

I was born and grew up in Winnipeg —a daydreamer with her nose in a book. In my twenties, I traveled around the world, mostly by ship. Later, I moved to Vancouver, where I earned a B.A. and M.Ed. at the University of British Columbia. Among my jobs were travel agent, college teacher, instructional designer and editor.

For years, I dabbled with writing. But I didn't begin to write in earnest until I had two young daughters. My first book was published in 1992, and I have since written more than twenty others, including novels, picture books and non-fiction. Like me, my books have traveled around the world and been published in places such as Greece, Latvia, Korea, China, Australia, Denmark, U.K., France and Poland.

I live in Vancouver, a short walk from the sea. I write full-time and still love to travel, read and daydream. 

      What kid doesn't think dinosaurs are awesome? And how many people know what to do if a stray dino just happens to make its way into your home? Okay, so maybe that's a little unlikely. In her newest picture book, Linda Bailey coaches the reader on what to do in the occasion that a dinosaur comes to make its way into the lives, and hearts, of their family.

     Now, when you imagine keeping a dinosaur around, it is likely that you would assume it would just take up space and cause more havoc than you need interrupting your daily routine. But you'd be surprised! They can be quite useful. It can mow your lawn, grind your coffee, serve as a burglar alarm...you can even use it as a paper shredder! However, I would advise you to keep tabs on that use with your children.

There are some things you wouldn't want your dinosaur to do for you, such as carrying your picnic basket (the food probably won't make it to the destination). Some dinosaurs make better kites and babysitters than others, but that's okay. You'll figure it out. Bailey says that once you start using your dinosaur, it will be a wonderful long-term relationship!

      You and your family will love If You Happen To Have a Dinosaur. Bailey does a great job of delivering humor in a "serious" way. Your child will enjoy the absurdity of the book, and you can appreciate the light-hearted tone through its entirety. 

The illustrations are very well done, and I love the way everything is shaded. The artwork compliments the narration and also shows movement where necessary. The illustrator is a story artist at Dreamworks Animation. If you like what you see here, you should definitely check out his website and browse his other work. It's pretty fantastic! On this particular project, he used a program called Sketchwork Pro. He's also been generous enough to give fans a sneak peek at some of the illustrations he did for If You Happen To Have a Dinosaur, and you can enjoy those here:

This was a delightful book! Between the hilarious narration and the fun, colorful illustrations, you and your child will stay entertained! Do I sense more books like this?:

But if you don't happen
 to have a dinosaur lying
 around your living room

(Not everyone does.)
What if you have an octopus instead

a porcupine,
a penguin,
a saber-tooth,
a sasquatch,
a dodo,
or a camel,
or a kangaroo

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