Wait, didn't I just write a review about a story that had a potato in it? Yes, The Potato King by Christoph Niemann. But this is different.
Sure, InvisiBill by Maureen Fergus starts off with the mention of potatoes (you may know the potato by its scientific name, Solanum Tuberrosum):
"If somebody had passed the potatoes
the first time Bill asked for them,
the wonderful, terrible thing
that happened might never have happened.
But nobody did."
But enough about potatoes. The story goes beyond to reveal much more. InvisiBill highlights a complexity of family dynamics. For starters, Bill is a middle child, and as the title of the book suggest, he feels a bit invisible in the family.
All Bill wanted was for someone to pass him the potatoes (sorry readers, for the mention of the p-word again). Unfortunately no one noticed. If someone had noticed, the wonderful, terrible thing that happened might never have happened. But it did.
Bill actually becomes invisible.
Maureen Fergus gives us a snapshot of life as it is today, where both parents work, and technology rules our lives. And she does it with a brilliant tongue-and-cheek style that delivers maximum impact and drama, while continuing to keep the rhythm of the narrative.
Bill's mother and father are both busy people, and sometimes they don't have time for Bill while they check their messages on their whatchamacalit and answer their thingamajiggy.
The adorable ending cannot be missed. The potato makes a comeback as Bill's mom offers him a plateful of them, and Duśan Petrićić does an amazing job of illustrating Bill as his eyes light up.
This is the second book I've read by Maureen Fergus. And What If I Won't is a fun book about a young boy's mischievous one-upmanship. I do find though that InvisiBill is one of Maureen Fergus' finest work yet.
InvisiBill is published by Tundra Books
@ShilpaRaikar for @SukasaReads (a division of @SukasaStyle)
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