I Know a Shy Fellow Who Swallowed a Cello
By Barbara S. Garriel
Illustrated by John O'Brien
This shy fellow suddenly has an urge to satisfy his unusual, musical appetite.
Instead of an old woman who swallows a fly, this droll cumulative tale introduces a shy fellow who swallows a cello. "I don't know why he swallowed the cello," says the narrator, "Perhaps he'll bellow." The tall, mouse-like protagonist swallows "a harp to jam with the cello," a sax to join the harp, and so on, until he eventually burps up not only the cello, but also the other instruments one by one. O'Brien's (Poof!) pen-and-ink drawings with watercolor wash are delightfully full of sly humor. The mischievous fellow resembles a scrawny Ichabod Crane, and as he grows larger, his spindly body matches the shape of each musical instrument he ingests (cutaway views show the accumulating orchestra). O'Brien also injects some amusing subplots: the harp that the man swallows belongs to an Irish dancing troupe, and he takes a cymbal from a marching band performing during halftime on the football field. -- Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information)