Sonderbooks Book Review of

Maya Makes a Mess

byRutu Modan

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Maya Makes a Mess

by Rutu Modan

Review posted December 15, 2012.
A Toon Book (Candlewick Press), 2012. 32 pages.

This book simply makes me laugh. It's a Toon Book -- a graphic novel for beginning readers. In fact, it's specifically a Level Two Easy-to-Read Comic for Emerging Readers in grades 1-2. The series contains some excellent tips at the back for reading comics with kids.

But the story is why I enjoy it. Maya is a messy eater. And the reason that makes me laugh? Well, she eats spaghetti exactly like my son did -- with bare hands. I completely understand the parents' frustration in saying to Maya -- "What if you were eating dinner with the Queen?"

So then the Queen invites Maya to dinner.

Maya is very polite. She remembers to say Please when she asks for pasta with ketchup. But when she doesn't know which fork to use and is told to eat it the way she does at home -- well, the entire dining room notices.

But this is a happy and silly story -- so eventually all the dressed-up grown-ups decide to eat like Maya does. Hilarity ensues.

This book will get a kid's focus off the laborious details of decoding words and have them enjoying the outrageously delightful story.