Monday, September 2, 2019

The Wolf in Underpants

The Wolf in Underpants. Wilfrid Lupano. Illustrated by Mayana Itoiz and Paul Cauuet. 2019. 40 pages. [Source: Library]

  First sentence: High above the forest lives the wolf. An icy cry. Crazy eyes. In these woods, we know to move our butts when the wolf comes down to eat.

Premise/plot: The forest residents are confident of at least one thing in life: the wolf is to be feared! No doubt about it, an unprepared and uninformed resident is one just waiting to be eaten or devoured. This picture book explores what happens when some actually actually come face to face with the wolf. They are surprised by many many things. For one, he is wearing underpants!!! For another, he is not at all like his description—perhaps with one exception, his teeth are sharp. Could everyone have the wrong impression of the wolf?! Could their preparations have been for absolutely nothing? Is their enemy one of their own imagining?

My thoughts: This is a clever picture book that will appeal to readers of various ages. The wolf is in underwear on most if not all pages. That and the use of the word “butts” throughout will make it hilarious to readers of a certain age. But on a serious note, it says something—something universal—about our culture. There is a market for fear. People can have a livelihood of talking about the enemy, building up fears—all in the name of building awareness, making you prepared, keeping you informed, protecting you and your loved ones. Sometimes what we think we know isn’t worth much. That’s not to say there wasn’t a germ of truth to their fears. The wolf did appear to be vicious and wild, crazy. But that was because of his COLD bum. The underpants that someone kindly knit him and gave him “changed” his life. No matter how much or how little you read into this one, it is an enjoyable read with a few giggles.

Text: 4 out of 5
Illustrations: 4 out of 5
Total: 8 out of 10

© 2019 Becky Laney of Young Readers

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