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Author: Jacqueline Vick

Illustrator: Ramis Kim

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Publisher:, ½2009

Material: paperback

Summary: Larry Butterball has taken every sentence literally since the day of his birth. If someone said that a squashed worm on the sidewalk was as "flat as a pancake," he would have made a pancake and compared its width to the width of the worm. With his newly made friend, Fyn Appleby, he goes out to test the literal meanings of common sayings. First on the list: "Wear clean underpants in case you get run over by a bus." Wearing dirty underpants and a pair of loose shorts, he is determined to execute his brilliant plan to get hit by a bus. Through a series of coincidences, he is instead hit by a flying tricycle! His shorts fall off and he has himself a conclusion to his experiment: clean underpants are indeed necessary! This is a chapter book for young readers.

Type of Reading: bedtime story, anytime reading, family reading, independent reading, read aloud book

Recommended Age: read together: 7 to 10; read yourself: 11 to 13

Interest Level: 8 to 12

Reading Level: 6.3

Age of Child: Teen STAR Review Team, Be the Star You Are!

Young Reader Reaction: Logical Larry can applaud itself for having some of the most unique and strange characters. From their names to descriptions, their charming naivety provides the basis of a chuckle-worthy story. Although its plot is not exciting or entirely mesmerizing, it is certainly original. It is a simple and quick read for older readers, but the audience is clearly for ages 6 through 9. The book also includes a glossary of difficult words; the vocabulary is defined easier for children to understand. The lines are double-spaced and the big fonts are great for the eyes. The illustrations are simple but enhance the words beautifully.

Adult Reader Reaction: Review Pending.

Pros: Humor is the order of the day in this story about the pitfalls of taking everything literally.

Cons: None.

Borrow or Buy: Borrow. Borrowing the book may be the wisest choice. Because it is such a short read, the reader will not find her or himself rereading this book many times.


Educational Themes: This is a fun story to share, especially if you want to dissect idioms. Boys will particularly like the humorous unfolding of events.

Notes: The author donated a copy of this book knowing that we would consider it for review and provide an independent, unbiased profile. This book will be given to a nonprofit to help readers in need.

Literary Categories: Fiction - family, school, growing up

Date(s) Reviewed: February 2010

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