Reviews for Old Black Fly
Horn Book Guide Reviews 1998
Just as old black fly gets swatted at the end of his Copyright 1998 Horn Book Guide Reviews
Kirkus Reviews 1992 March
``Old black fly's been/buzzin' around...And he's had a very/busy bad day,'' begins this alphabetical litany of misdemeanors (``He frolicked on the Eggs/for the birthday cake./He licked up the Frosting,/ for goodness sake./Shoo fly!/Shoo fly!/Shooo''). Having troubled the entire household and ``lit on the List'' of groceries (all of which turn up elsewhere), the fly ``Zzzz'''s onto a table where he comes to a just end: the baby drops the cake on him. Aylesworth's buoyant, rhythmic verse provides inspiration for a wondrous evolution of Gammell's style. Framing the book in dramatic fly-black endpapers, he intensifies his trademark rainbow colors, laying them on a white ground in vibrant clouds, flinging them in ebullient splatters signifying the mess and confusion in the fly's wake, and counterpointing the impressionistic setting with precisely observed characters and details: an outraged cat, Gramma's wizened face, the hairy, red-eyed culprit. Sheer delight for eyes, ears, and funny-bones. (Picture book. 3+) # Copyright 1999 Kirkus Reviews
Publishers Weekly Reviews 1992 March #1
Aylesworth and Gammell wing their way through the alphabet on the back of a pesky housefly in this ebullient picture-book romp. On a summer day, old black fly ``bothered the baby,'' ``coughed on the cookies'' and ``drove the dog nearly out of his wits,'' as family members attempt to ``Shoo fly! / Shoo fly! Shooo.'' The persistent pest leaves a messy trail of near disasters until finally meeting up with the wrong end of a swatter. Ayleworth's snappy couplets constitute a waggish presentation of a basic concept. A brightly colored first letter highlights one word on each page that corresponds to the objects and action found in the illustration. Gammell's paintings are exuberant splashes of mayhem--rainbows of splattered hues from which truly memorable characters emerge. His appropriately bug-eyed (and cross-eyed) fly and gap-toothed humans sporting crazy hairdos provide a level of dementia that children will relish. Ages 4-7. (Apr.) Copyright 1992 Cahners Business Information.
Publishers Weekly Reviews 1995 February #3
PW dubbed this rhythmic journey through the alphabet on the back of a pesky housefly an ``ebullient picture-book romp,'' lauding the ``waggish presentation of a basic concept.'' Ages 4-7. (Mar.) Copyright 1995 Cahners Business Information.
School Library Journal Reviews 1992 April
PreS-Gr 3-- A pesky fly turns a household inside out in this rollicking tale. ``He ate on the crust of the A pple pie./He bothered the B aby and made her cry./ Shoo fly! Shoo fly! Shooo.'' This fly is on an alphabetical rampage through the house, leaving destruction in his wake as he flits from the C ookie to the D og to the E ggs to the F rosting, and so on to a final, satisfying ``Swat!'' Aylesworth's funny, rhythmic chant is strong enough to stand alone. Add Gammell's spattery, jumpy illustrations, splashed with color, alive with movement, line, and humor, and what emerges is a book that's sure to become a classic. To be enjoyed at home as a lapbook, to be read aloud with relish at story times, to be chanted again and again and again! --Gail C. Ross, Baltimore County Public Library Copyright 1992 Cahners Business Information.