From MAXWELL'S MAGIC MIX-UP. Illustrations ©2001 by Regan Dunnick. With permission of Simon & Schuster.
It's my sister's seventh birthday.
Entertainer calls in sick.
Poor Louise is brokenhearted.
Better find a back-up quick!
Call the ghost, the clown, the dragon.
Call the circus and the zoo.
Only Maxwell the Magician
Isn't booked today at two.
Party starts. Magician enters.
Hocus Pocus! What a shock!
Stumbles through his incantation . . .
Turns Louise into a rock!
When I was a kid, our birthday parties usually consisted of a few games, a few presents, and some cake. That was pretty much it. As a new mom, it came as quite a shock to me to see how much birthday parties have changed. Now Jackson gets invited to very elaborate, catered events with clowns and magicians and superheroes and dinosaurs and reptile zoos. This is serious business. Which of course made me wonder what would happen if one of these entertainers flubbed big time. Enter Maxwell.
I laughed out loud when I saw Regan Dunnick's sketches for this book. I love the sense of panic and pandemonium he conveys as Maxwell gets increasingly befuddled, and especially love the spread where the birthday rock sits quietly, surrounded by utter chaos.
Teaching Themes: imagination, magic and magicians, birthday parties, humor, stories in rhyme, children's theatre.