From the illustrator of the #1 smash hit The Day the Crayons Quit comes a whodunnit just right for the youngest of readers (not to mention instructions for how to build the perfect paper airplane!)
The animals? homes are disappearing. Tree by tree, the forest is being cut down. Clues! There must be clues. For instance, look--there is a mysterious bear carrying an ax! But what would a bear want with so many trees? Perhaps the discarded paper airplanes littering the forest floor have a story to tell?
Oliver Jeffers' quirky, childlike humor and lovable illustrations are in full effect in this funny whodunit featuring a winning cast of animals and a message about the importance of conservation and recycling.
Jeffers's (The Incredible Book-Eating Boy) forest creatures have dots for eyes and sticks for legs; they live in tidy holes in the ground, equipped with home offices and washing machines. Responsible citizens, they notice that trees in their forest are missing big branches, and organize themselves to find the perpetrator readers know from the outset it's the bear, in need of paper for a paper airplane contest. The drama unfolds in neatly paced vignettes and comic book style panels with the rounded corners of old television sets. Jeffers joins the speech balloons to his characters' mouths with ruled pencil lines; his spidery writing is a sweetly incongruous vehicle for fast-moving patter ("I'll be the detective and you can be the judge," the beaver tells the deer. "Why do I have to be the judge?'" the deer protests, and waves a hoof toward the pig. "Why not him?" "I'm the prosecutor, that's why," says the pig). The conclusion nods toward forgiveness and restorative justice, but it's the anti-crime tape that gets the laughs. Jeffers lobs a joke or two over the heads of young listeners, a gesture that will be welcomed by presiding adults. Ages 3 5.