Publishers Weekly, 1993-11-15 Although the ``slightly outrageous verse'' in Billings's first book does not reach the out-and-out coarseness of television's Beavis and Butt-head, the poems in this intermittently entertaining volume confuse tasteless innuendo with real humor. Johnny picks not only the time and place to ask a girl out, but ruins ``the whole effect'' by picking his nose too. Cowboy Cal wears a ten-gallon hat ``and nothing more, / then wonders why he gets saddle sore.'' In other instances, the verses are awkwardly rhymed or blatantly sentimental. Suzanna's ``magic'' dimple ``reduces mama's anger / to a wistful little sigh'' and John is beyond reproach because of his ``silly little grin, / a smile that melts your heart away and brings the sunshine in.'' Todd's minimal black-and-white cartoon characters, with outsize eyes and zig-zag smiles, match Billings's low comedy: when Grandma Johnson finds her toothbrush but not her teeth, her false teeth are pictured chomping her very large behind. Ages 5-up. (Nov.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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