Thursday, November 19, 2009

Finn Throws a Fit by David Elliott and Timothy Basil Ering

A toddler throws a giant tantrum. I wasn't sure at first that I liked seeing yet another book where the child has hovering parents wrapped around his finger. In early scenes where Finn's temper is beginning to flare, the father is on his knees, cajoling with an assortment of toys and a soother. (He is obviously not a young man; his hair is half gone.) But Ering's charcoal and oil paintings won me over. They are delightfully funny. Finn himself is depicted as more head than body and wearing yellow boots. His yelling, tears and stamping feet cause storms, hurricanes and blizzards to sweep through the house, tumbling furniture, parents and pet in the rampage. The dog is surfing on a flying dinner plate in one spread. I enjoyed the hyperbole and I especially liked the ending. "It lasts until it doesn't." Tantrums are often inexplicable. Finn is sweet and lovable at the end... he even says "Please." Ages 1 - 4 (and their beleaguered parents).

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