Reading/Interest Level: Preschool, Primary
Author: Mac Barnett
Illustrator: Patrick McDonnell
Publisher: Roaring Brook Press
One day, when a man is leaving his house, he finds a skunk on his front porch. He carefully sneaks past him and goes on his way, only to find that the skunk is following him! Despite all his efforts to rid himself of this strange creature, including taking a cab and going to an opera, his is followed by the skunk every time. Finally the man makes his way across the city and buys a new home, celebrating the riddance of the skunk by having a party, only to realize that he doesn’t feel quite complete without his skunk. The chase then reverses itself as the man finds and follows the skunk.
This curious book is surprisingly entertaining. Despite there being no explanation for why the skunk followed the man, the pursuit was engaging and the ending was unexpected and funny. The book’s illustrations feature mainly black, white, and brown tones with fun, bright red accents, and they enhance the text by adding quite a bit of humor (the expressions on the character’s faces are highly amusing). Some of the pages contain advanced words, which may either confuse readers or help expand their vocabulary. Overall, this is a humorous read with an interesting plot and comical pictures.