Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers
March 24, 2011
BLOG TOUR: Slippery Willie's Stupid, Ugly Shoes by Larry Peterson
Happy Thursday everyone!
Today Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers is proud to play host to a book tour thanks to Tribute Books featuring a rather unique Children’s Storybook. Unique how you say? The length, the drawings, the content, the title…take your pick! There’s really something that stands out about it in all aspects so let’s jump right into it shall we? Today’s featured book title and blog tour guest is…
Slippery Willie’s Stupid, Ugly Shoes
This is a book about shoes…and who doesn’t LOVE shoes right? Well, Willie for one, or at the very least his newest pair. You see, young Willie needs special shoes to stay on his special feet. Shoes that he won’t just slip out of because when he’s barefoot and fancy free, the sky’s the limit on where he might slide off to next. Special shoes seem like the best solution to the problem at hand, but will Willie be able to get past his fear of what others might think of them?
Though certainly not words you usually hear in a children’s book (let alone the title…though they do grab your attention), “stupid” and “ugly” aren’t that far off track when describing his new footwear. Think of a pair of shoes you’ve had that you less-than-loved (me…at the time, black & white saddle shoes….oye….but oh how fun it was when they started coming in PINK and white!)…got the image? Now add on a lock or two attaching them to your feet….yep, I’d say they probably didn’t get much better now did they? Didn’t think so, but here’s the real “key”. It’s not really about the shoes in life or in this book; it’s about something much bigger and closer to home.
The author gave Willie something so silly, so out there, so hard to accept to illustrate his point in full color literary fun (and the pictures are just that…full color, and wonderfully fun). People ARE different. It’s those differences that make us unique. Without them, well we probably wouldn’t know any better because there would be nothing to compare the vast amount of sameness to, but I can only imagine it’d be fairly humdrum. The rainbow of personalities, personal styles, hair lengths, face shapes, eye colors, talents and so on all add up to a world of beauty that I would much rather live in….wouldn’t you? So I say, HOORAY for Willie and his slippery feet. Welcome to the club we call life and prepare for all the adventures that await you.
As for the story itself, you’ll smile and “aww” your way through this one as Willie and his Mom deal with his special needs. There was one point where I was in shock at the way an adult at school was interacting with Willie, but it turns out to be something else entirely than how it’s first perceived, lending this reader a sigh of relief when all was revealed (because otherwise, I was going to throttle this adult character… *-*). After the story comes to an end, the author included a great add on to the learning/reading experience in the form of an Interactive Guide. In it, there are a few suggested activities and questions for discussion that can be easily utilized by friends, family, and educators to expand the moral of the story into real life experience; something to take advantage of for certain.
Continuing through the book, you can’t help but take notice of the artwork. Each one is a work of art and has that distinct quality of a pencil sketch with colored shading bringing them to life straight off the 2D page. The illustrations are fun, funny, and colorful; always depicting in detail the scenes being described along with the emotions flitting from page to page. When Willie is “trapped” in his shoes for the first time, his expression is so sad! It brings a tear to your eye, but no worries readers…it ends on a happy note.
Recommended reading for all ages. It’s a tad wordier than some storybooks but the wonderful illustrations and powerful message are well worth the read. So make some time to meet Willie, trust me…you’ll be glad you did.
Until next time…happy reading!