Road Test

There were no new posts last week because I was camping in Wyoming, but that provided a perfect opportunity to evaluate one of the new books I ordered this summer: Sipping Spiders Through a Straw by Kelly DiPucchio with illustrations by Gris Grimly. The artwork evokes a Tim Burton film, but this is no Halloween book; it is a book of campfire songs for monsters which has summer written all over it. With gross lyrics set to familiar tunes and disturbing imagery, I figured this book would be ideal for the group of 12 and 13 year old Boy Scouts with whom I went camping last week. I didn’t get the raving exclamations I expected, but the book did prove to be engrossing to the boys. We didn’t actually use it around the campfire, as the illustrations are more enjoyable in better light and this group of Scouts was surprisingly not inclined to have a campfire most nights anyway. When it came time for the troops to present skits and songs at a commissioner campfire, however, our boys were more than adequately equipped! In the end the book drew more interest from the assistant scoutmaster than it did from the scouts themselves, but there’s no harm in that; scoutmasters go camping more than the scouts do!

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