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Mitchell’s License by Hallie Durand and illustrated by Tony Fucile ($15.99, Candlewick, ages 3-7) is reviewed by Ronna Mandel.
With some strong neck muscles, and an eager driver, Mitchell’s dad hoisted his son upon his shoulders nightly to play a bedtime game of “Remote-Control Dad.” According to author Hallie Durand, her husband invented the game, guaranteed to get kids in gear for a road trip to dreamland. The inimitable Tony Fucile added the V6 powered artwork making this a fun-fueled story for preschoolers to second graders with a penchant for running on empty.
Meet Mitchell who, until his dad creates this nighttime ritual, will do whatever it takes to avoid his bedtime routine. Dad, however, has another plan in mind. He makes his shoulders the driver’s seat, his head the steering wheel and his eyeglasses the windshield. Together the father-son team steer clear of boring and head straight for adventure. Once Mitchell’s been assured that his father’s in tip top, road ready condition, the duo are off! But watch out, there are obstacles ahead and no signs to warn the car or driver! And while the horn and brakes work just fine, occasionally Mitchell’s dad (aka the auto) could use a tune up, an oil change and even some gas.
This laugh-filled, creative story may become part of your own family’s ritual so get those shoulders in shape for some serious driving and remember to look both ways before turning the page.