Thursday, February 26, 2015

Hoot Owl Master of Disguise by Sean Taylor

Hoot Owl Master of Disguise by Sean Taylor, illustrated by Jean Jullien
Candlewick Press

Rating: 5 stars

This book is best read with some sort of heavy accent, which means that I read it in a heavy, atrocious French accent. But my kids don't care what I mispronounce. They're too amused by the silly way words are coming out of my mouth, too curious about the story, too wrapped up in Hoot Owl, wondering what he's going to dress up as and sneak up on, to care whether or not my accent is realistic.

Hoot Owl tells the story in play-by-play present tense, making me and my kids feel like we're right there with him, right beside his ruffle of feathers. Under the darkness of midnight, he flies around. And did you know that owls are not only wise, but they are also the masters of disguise? (It was news to us, too.)

I disguise myself ornamental birdbath.
It is the perfect way to catch a pigeon. I wait.
He is hungry and looking to find something to eat. A-HA! A rabbit! He must devise a costume! (In the big, bold illustrations by Jean Jullien, Hoot Owl is sewing with twig and thread some orange and green get-up.)

It's a carrot costume! He lies in wait but the rabbit gets away. Drat!

He is still hungry and looking to find something to heat. A-HA! A sheep! He must devise a costume! (We see him fumbling with a lot of white, fluffy stuff.)

It's a sheep costume! He lies in wait but the sheep gets away. Drat!

This goes on a few more times until everybody's favorite part: Hoot Owl spies a pizza and dresses up as a mustached waiter in order to sneak up on it. This time, the disguise works! The pizza does not move! He enjoys every single bite with silly comments (which I think he manages to get out when his beak is not full).

And then he zips off into the night sky. Hoot Owl, master of disguise!

Fun, fun, fun!

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