Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Prehistoric Fun with the Oodlethunks


Oona Finds an Egg by Adele Griffin. The Oodlethunks #1. Illustrated by Mike Wu. 135 p. Scholastic Press, January, 2016. 9780545732796. (Finished copy courtesy of publisher)

Steg-o-normous by Adele Griffin. The Oodlethunks #2. Illustrated by Mike Wu. 138 p. Scholastic Press, September, 2016. 9780545732840. (Finished copy courtesy of publisher)

With a nod to the Flintstones, Griffin's new series features the Oodlethunks. Stay-at-home Dad loves to experiment with food, Mom is trying to market a new invention called the wheel, Oona pines for a pet and her little brother, Thunk, loves to bonk things. Oona narrates the story of how she found a huge egg when she took the long way home from school. Her parents allow her to incubate the egg. Bruce, the neighborhood bully covets the egg and devises a way to make it his.

There's lots of humor in this illustrated novel, most of it revolving around the use of modern day convenience in the time of cave people. The settlement is in what is now Denver, Colorado and there are prehistoric facts woven into the writing as well. The sand-toned illustrations are cartoonish and plentiful. 

This would make a great read aloud to complement a unit on prehistory. The kids I read this aloud to had fun making connections and clamored for the second volume, Steg-o-normous.

In Steg-o-normous, Stacy, the baby stegosaur is growing too fast. She's also eating everything in sight. Everyone is the victim of Stacey's voracious appetite. Then she gets stuck in the Oodlethunk's cave. Oona and her friends work together to save Stacey and the Oodlethunk home. My kids enjoyed this one so much, they asked for the next installment and were terribly disappointed that book three, Welcome to Camp Oodlethunk is not yet out. In fact, it's not due out until May! "Boo!" they said.

The Oodlethunks series is a fun addition to any middle grade collection.

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