Sunday, February 4, 2018

Meet at the Ark at Eight by Ulrich Hub illustrated by Jorg Muhle

I think I smiled right through this little quirky book but here is a warning some people might find all the questions about the existence and role of God quite confronting and yet I would say the questions are probably the same ones all humans (young and old) have had at some time.

Three penguins are living in the land of ice and snow and snow and ice and ice and snow. A butterfly arrives and the three begin to ponder the existence of God. 

Here is an abridged version of their conversation :

"So who is God?
Oh, God ... that's a difficult question
Well, God is great and very, very powerful. He came with with all sorts of rules and can become quite grumpy if you don't stick to them. Other than that, he's very friendly.
There's just one small disadvantage to God
What's that?
God is invisible.
Well, that's a huge disadvantage ... If you can't see God, you can't be sure whether he really exists."

As this dialogue continues a dove arrives with news of Noah and his ark.  He tells the penguins to meet at the ark at eight.  The problem is God and Noah only want two penguins. The first two decide to take their friend in their suitcase. The are worried about drowning and are in a rush to get over to the ark. (Take a minute to think about this).

Hiding the third penguin on the ship gives rise to a hilarious series of events. Of course the flood eventually subsides after the obligatory 40 days. The three penguins are saved but what about the dove. She kept having a niggling thought that she was missing something :

"I've got it, at last! The whole time, I've had this funny feeling I'd forgotten something!"

Read an interview with the publisher here.  Here is a review by a young reader. Try to find some books by Nicholas Allen if Meet at the Ark at Eight tickles your funny bone.  You could also read Meet at the Ark at Eight to a class familiar with the story of Noah's Ark then you might look for these other odd ball versions too.

I think kids will enjoy this version of Noah’s Ark, if not for the questions it will raise, then  for the humorous story of three best friends trying to help each other through life. KidLit reviews

No comments: