Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Mudshark by Gary Paulsen

Mudshark  can remember nearly everything. Lose something at school?

Ask Mudshark. He'll know where it is.

Even adults ask for his help. When the Librarian buys a parrot, it too has great locating skills, and Mudshark's stream of followers start to seek help from the Parrot.

Except for... the Principal.

He asks for Mudshark's help in locating the school's missing erasers and when Mudshark finds them he has to decide whether or not to turn in the culprit. Find out how he gets out of his dilemma and takes care of the Parrot at the same time.

This book is a quick read at 83 pages.  Many of the characters are extreme in their behavior which makes the situations funny. One boy can't find his shoe because he'd been hit in the head so many times from the sport, Death Ball. Mudshark knows exactly where it is. The Librarian doesn't know that the armadillo she bought was a purse. It sits in a cage until Mudshark tells her what it is. The Principal keeps asking for the erasers to be returned when giving announcements. Eventually they all disappear and he seeks out Mudshark's help in finding them.

I couldn't pinpoint the humor - at first it seemed like slapstick, then I thought it was adultlike, in other places it was clever, and at other times I thought it was dumb. The vocabulary is high in this book and there isn't much action. The characters are interesting and the adults are dumber than doorknobs. Readers will vary in how funny they find the story.

Reading Level 6.3

:-) :-) :-) 3 out of 5 Smileys

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