Daily Archives: November 19, 2007

When Dinosaurs Came With Everything


All kids love free stuff. A lot of kids love dinosaurs. So, for many kids, a world where dinosaurs came free with everything would more or less equal total bliss.

A picture book that is cute, clever and charmingly illustrated is for me, more or less total bliss. Enter When Dinosaurs Came with Everything by Elise Broach, illustrated by David Small. I like it. You will like it too, I think. Confession, dinosaur books are a hard sell for me. I don’t care even a little bit about dinosaurs (OK, maybe the littlest bit). I am not interested in their fancy, many syllabled-names. I do not think much about what wiped them out. Dinosaur exhibits at museums – not my thing. And yet, after reading this quirky, creative tale, I find myself suddenly wondering if there is a place in my heart after all for a small (or not so small) dino buddy (especially one who cleans the eaves).

When a little boy sets off for a day of errands with his mother, he is none too happy about it. Things take a decided turn for the better when he finds out that today you get a free dinosaur with every purchase.  This is a whimsical book – and who doesn’t like a little whimsy? Gentle humour comes through in both the words and the illustrations. And this is most definitely a book to win over parents and kids, as the comedy appeals to grown ups too. I also like the fact that while the main character is a boy, this dinosaur book does not scream 100% boy the way so many of its kind do. 

By the way. David Small has illustrated some of my favorite favorites ever:

cover.jpg and 51d8am0ccjl_ss500_.jpgfor instance.

Clearly, he can do no wrong.

To further sweeten this deal, Elise Broach has a lovely website. She is evidently a clever lady poised to write even more delightful stories for all of us. Visit her at Elise Broach.com.

When Dinosaurs Came With Everythingis published by Atheneum.