The Soggy Town of Hilltop by Kevin McNamee

The High Council of Hilltop passed rules on everything. One day, they decide the people in their little hamlet should drink from the top of their heads. The people are confused, but of course, they obey. Then one day, a boy from the South asked them, “Hey, why don’t you drink with your mouth?”  Not knowing the answer, the people go to the High Council to find out, which leads to the entire town learning something new.

The Soggy Town of Hilltop is a funny, rhyming story by Kevin McNamee. Having read McNamee’s The Sister Exchange and If I Could Be Anything, I was eager to read his latest book. The author has a great knack for turning something seemingly ridiculous into an engaging story for youngsters. In The Sister Exchange it was a young girl who wanted to trade her sister in at The Sister Exchange. In this latest book, the rulers of Hilltop are bored and decide to make up a silly new rule for the people to follow.

What I really like about The Soggy Town of Hilltop is that McNamee spells out the lesson in the end for readers. There isn’t any second guessing as to what the point is. Like one of Aesop’s fables, the moral of the story is in plain sight.

The illustrations in this one are equally funny and beautiful. Eugene Ruble does such an excellent job of bringing a story to life with his artwork. From the freckles on the boy from the South’s cheeks to the pointy nose and evil eyes of one of the High Council members, and from the mountain peaks to the dirt road running through town, the details Ruble adds make the pictures jump off the pages.

I will definitely be on the lookout for more books by Kevin McNamee!

Rating:  🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

  • Publisher: Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc
  • ISBN-10: 1616330414
  • ISBN-13: 978-1616330415
  • SRP:  $10.95

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    The Sister Exchange by Kevin McNamee

    Bill Cosby used to have a comedy skit about parenting back in the 70’s. One of the points he used to make is that if you have only one child you’re not really a parent. I didn’t quite understand how he could say such a thing, but that was before I had two young girls close in age who fight constantly. If I remember the skit correctly, Cosby said you weren’t a real parent if you only had one child because you didn’t have to listen to things like, “She’s touching me!”  

    In this charming and delightful book, Kevin McNamee tackles the issue of sibling rivalry in a fun and unique way. When Brianna, the oldest of two sisters, complains about her younger sister, Julianne, she tells her mother that she wants a new sister. Julianne is always bugging her, and following her around, wanting to do what she does, and it’s plain old annoying.

    So, Mom calls up the Sister Exchange and asks to trade in Julianne. That’s when Brianna learns something surprising about Julianne and herself.

    The Sister Exchange is one of those stories that will make you feel good by the time you reach the end. As your child follows along Brianna’s journey to trade in her sister, they learn how special siblings can truly be; that despite those little things about them that might bug you, you’re lucky to have them around.

    In a fun and engaging way, McNamee has taken a serious issue and turned it into a story that will delight your children.

    The illustrations by Kit Grady are the perfect compliment to this story. I was already a fan of her work, but she’s outdone herself in her creation of these two sisters and the many humorous illustrations of the potential sister replacements; though I have to say that Hissy the cat is my favorite.

    A great story with a superb ending, The Sister Exchange by Kevin McNamee is definitely a book you’ll want to share with your little girls.

    Rating:  🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

  • Publisher: Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc
  • ISBN-10: 1616330155
  • ISBN-13: 978-1616330156
  • SRP:  $10.95

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