grumpy bird

Don't you just hate people who wake up cheerful? Give me a Grumpy Birdanytime:

When Bird woke up, he was grumpy.

He was too grumpy to play.

In fact, he was too grumpy to fly.

“Looks like I'm walking today,” said Bird.

“Grumpy Bird” (Scholastic: $12.99, ages 3-6) is the creation of Jeremy Tankard, for my money the most thrilling picture-book artist to arrive on the children's book scene in recent years. The author and illustrator — “authorstrator,” one young fan called him — can make people of all ages laugh out loud.

His first book, “Grumpy Bird” (2007) introduced Bird, whose one-eyed squint at the irritating morning world made him an instant hero to anyone with a cranky toddler or a morning coffee jones. In the just-published sequel, “Boo Hoo Bird” (Scholastic: $14.99, ages 3-6), Bird gets a bonk on the head and develops the situation into the proportions of opera while taking all the consoling he can get. In between these two books, there was last year's “Me Hungry” (Candlewick: $15.99, ages 3-6), about a caveboy's epic, life-changing search for a bite to eat.

more from Sonja Bolle at the LA Times here.