Book Reviews

So many books. So little time.

Incredible Me by Kathi Appelt

Talk about an incredible pick-me-up of a book.

I'm the cat's meow

I'm the dog's top flea

I'm the one, the only,

most marvelous Me!

One by one the author enumerates the adjectives—the qualities if you will—that describe this rambunctious heroine. Nothing, but nothing gets her down.

"Nobody has my singular nose," she sings.

What a perfect opening sentence. The proboscis is an organ of dissatisfaction, as Moms well know—too thick, too thin, too sharp, too long….on and on and on. The nose stands out, can’t hide it or camouflage it. And here she is, totally accepting her singular nose.

I'm the cream in the butter,

I'm the salt in the sea

she sings. She is useful, she is that which defines things, and makes them what they are.

Nobody marches in my two boots

but also

Nobody itches in my new suit.

The not–so–good is also part of her. Day and night, the song continues. Very cleverly the illustrations morph from daylight to night scenes. The pages grow dark purple, star shine and light bulbs replace the sunlight. Day and night. 24/7. This is a song of acceptance, no matter when, no matter where.

The illustrations march hand in hand with the words. They are simply done, and within this simplicity G. Brian Karas brings in a joyfulness and exuberance. There she is, in the spotlight, the cat’s meow. You can SEE the sound of the whistle. The words march up the page and down again. They go round in circles.

I'm the pearl in the oyster, the A to the Z

I'm the one, the only, incredible Me!

Short enough that youngsters can memorize it and sing it to themselves with as much energy as the young girl. With a happy acceptance that will have parents rooting for the book too.

Title: Incredible Me

Author: Kathi Appelt

Illustrator: G. Brian Karas

Publisher: Harper Collins

Hardback: 32 pages

ISBN: 978-0060286224