Duckworth, the Difficult Child

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Duckworth’s parents think he is a difficult child. They are even reading a book called Dealing with Your Difficult Child. So when Duckworth finds a snake in his closet and runs to tell his parents, they think the snake is all in his head. When the snake swallows Duckworth whole, his parents think he is wearing a costume. Duckworth goes through his day stuck inside the snake because his parents will not listen to him. He must come up with a clever plan to free himself before the snake eats someone else. Fortunately, Duckworth has his recorder instrument. Maybe he can charm the snake into setting him free.

Duckworth, the Difficult Child is a very strange tale with a humorous turn, and reminiscent of the best of Maurice Sendak. Author Michael Sussman, also a survivor of difficult parents, gives his main character agency to solve his own problem. The adults are ridiculously distracted from the problem at hand, and Julia Sarda’s illustrations complement the story’s tone. Her characters are haughtily dressed in textured and earthy colored vintage clothing. Sarda also gives readers interesting details on every page, even providing an overhead shot of Duckworth’s extravagant family estate.

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Author Michael Sussman
Star Count 4/5
Format Hard
Page Count 40 pages
Publisher Atheneum Books for Young Readers
Publish Date 2019-06-18
ISBN 9781534405127
Amazon Buy this Book
Issue August 2019
Category Children's


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