AUTHOR: Julie Falatko
ILLUSTRATOR: Tim Miller
PUBLICATION INFO: Viking Books for Young Readers (February 2, 2016)
SOURCE: personal copy
INTENDED AUDIENCE: ages 4+
GENRE: picture book
OPENING and SYNOPSIS:
“Snappsy the alligator wasn’t feeling like himself.
His feet felt draggy.
His skin felt baggy.”
From the publisher: “Snappsy the alligator is having a normal day when a pesky narrator steps in to spice up the story. Is Snappsy reading a book … or is he making CRAFTY plans? Is Snappsy on his way to the grocery store … or is he PROWLING the forest for defenseless birds and fuzzy bunnies? Is Snappsy innocently shopping for a party … or is he OBSESSED with snack foods that start with the letter P? What’s the truth? ”
WHY I LIKE THIS BOOK: Snappsy…How do we love you, let us count the ways. My first-grader is a big fan of other metafiction like WE ARE IN A BOOK (Willems) and A PERFECTLY MESSED UP STORY (McDonnell). He found the dichotomy between what the narrator said about Snappsy and what Snappsy was actually doing to be hilarious. Snappsy shopping at the supermarket was a favorite. This book is fun for home, but is wonderful in a classroom as well. I read it to a group of third-graders for Read Across America, and the book prompted a lively discussion about narrators and storytelling. The students also commented on Miller’s illustrations, including the fact that Snappsy is holding a book about himself on the front cover.
- Have older students write a Snappsy-style book. What happens when the narrator says one thing, and the character does another?
- Falatko offers Snappsy activity sheets on her Snappsy Activity Sheets.
- Make your own Snappsy using egg cartons and more.
You’ll find way more cool books at Susanna Leonard Hill’s “Perfect Picture Books.” Every Friday folks review a host of new books. Join us!