Tonight I thought I’d give the boys a treat by reading How I Became a Pirate. (I don’t like romanticizing pirates, so we don’t have many pirate-related books. Which may make reading about them more exciting, rather than less. Huh.) But the boys took one look at it and moaned, in unison: “We have that at school!”
So, I picked out Meshka. And they were thrilled. Go figure.
Meshka is a practiced complainer (a kvetch). Her back doesn’t simply ache, it feels as if she has “carried the Wall of Jericho itself.” Her studious son “sit[s] around the house like a bump on a kosher pickle.” And so on and so forth. But, one day, everything she complains about literally comes to pass. What is a kvetch to do?
The message here (praise the good in your life rather than bemoan the bad) isn’t subtle, but it is a good one and easily carried along by the humorous plot and lively illustrations.
Author: Carol Chapman
Illustrator: Arnold Lobel