Sonderbooks Book Reviews by Sondra Eklund

Sonderbooks Stand-out 2005
Buy from

Rate this Book

Sonderbooks 97
    Previous Book

Young Adult Fiction
Children's Nonfiction
Children's Fiction
Picture Books
        Previous Book
        Next Book

2005 Stand-outs
    Previous Book
    Next Book

2004 Stand-outs
2003 Stand-outs
2002 Stand-outs
2001 Stand-outs

Five-Star Books
    Previous Book
    Next Book

Four-Star Books
Old Favorites
Back Issues
List of Reviews by Title
List of Reviews by Author

Why Read?
Children and Books
Links For Book Lovers
Book Discussion Forum

About Me
Contact Me
Make a Donation

I don't review books I don't like!

*****= An all-time favorite
****  = Outstanding
***    = Above average
**     = Enjoyable
*        = Good, with reservations


*****Once Upon a Cool Motorcycle Dude

written and illustrated by Kevin O'Malley

also illustrated by Carol Heyer and Scott Goto

Reviewed July 13, 2005.
Walker & Company, New York, 2005.  32pages.
Available at Sembach Library (E OMA).
Sonderbooks Stand-out 2005 (#3, Picture Books)

I laughed out loud when I read this book, even though I was in the library.  And I had to bring it home for my family to read.  (They loved it, too.)

The book begins with a boy and a girl who were supposed to tell their favorite fairy tale to their class.  They couldn’t agree on which story was best, so they made one up.

The girl begins.  She introduces the beautiful Princess Tenderheart, who had eight beautiful ponies named Jasmie, Nimble, Sophie, Polly, Penny, Sunny, Monica, and Buttercup.  When a giant begins stealing her ponies, Princess Tenderheart cries all day.

The boy doesn’t like the way the story is going, so he brings in a cool motorcycle dude to fight the giant and earn the gold thread that the princess spins from straw.

The girl doesn’t like the way the story is going, so they end up making an ending together that both of them can enjoy—sort of.

This book is wonderfully funny, playing on the stereotypes of what boys and girls like, and ending up with something for everyone.  The pictures beautifully accompany it, with Carol Heyer illustrating the girl’s lovely fairy tale, and Scott Goto presenting the boy’s cool motorcycle dude and disgusting ogre.

This story will definitely find its way into some Library Story Times this summer, and is sure to be a crowd pleaser.  Besides the fun story, it’s a light-hearted look at the way males and females are different, even at such a young age.

Copyright © 2005 Sondra Eklund.  All rights reserved.

-top of page-