When Baby Billy is born with a mustache, his family takes it in stride. They are reassured when he nobly saves the day in imaginary-play sessions as a cowboy or cop and his mustache looks good-guy great. But as time passes, their worst fears are confirmed when little Billy’s mustache starts to curl up at the ends in a suspiciously villainous fashion. Sure enough, “Billy’s disreputable mustache led him into a life of dreadful crime.” Plenty of tongue-in-cheek humor and cartoonish illustrations make this the perfect baby-shower gift for a mustachioed father-to-be.
From mustache parties to Movember, upper lip hair is the accessory du jour, and why should babies be left out of the fun? When Billy is born with a mustache, a helpful nurse tells his folks, "You'll just have to wait and see whether it is a good-guy mustache or a bad-guy mustache." As Billy graduates to toddlerdom, his mustache appears to be a force for good: as a "man of the law" (complete with reflective sunglasses and badge), Billy "stopped speeders... outlawed poker... and caught thieves red-handed," writes Heos (Stronger Than Steel). Never mind that his actions are completely annoying and disruptive to his siblings. When Billy's mustache begins to grow and curl, it leads him into "a life of dreadful crime," requiring jail time (or crib time, anyway) to straighten him out. Ang (I Will Not Read This Book) has a blast portraying Billy as hero, villain, and everything in between (with facial hair worthy of Tom Selleck or Snidely Whiplash, as needed); her digital illustrations have the warmth of acrylic painting, and the book's oddball sense of humor is unflagging. Ages 4 8.