The king of too many things

Laurel Snyder

Book - 2017

When Jasper the little king gets bored, he asks his wizard for a dragon, setting off a chain of events that leads to dire consequences--and a new friend.

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Subjects
Genres
Picture books
Published
Emmaus, Pennsylvania : Rodale Kids [2017]
Language
English
Physical Description
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 26 cm
ISBN
9781623368746
162336874X
Main Author
Laurel Snyder (author)
Other Authors
Aurore Damant, 1981- (illustrator)
Review by Booklist Reviews

King Jasper is bored. He rules his kingdom from his throne of pillows and spends every single afternoon reading, coloring, and snacking with his dog. Jasper asks a handy wizard to help him break the monotony, so the wizard conjures up a bright pink dragon. Unfortunately, it sets everything on fire. Next, the wizard conjures robots to stomp the fires. But they start smashing everything. Next, the wizard creates superheroes to come to the rescue. But they get too much attention. Uh, how about some colorful rainbow kittens?! The enjoyment here, obviously, is in the bigger and bigger mess the wizard causes. That is, until Jasper meets Janey, who helps him clean up the disaster. Each page is filled with Damant's big and often pink- or purple-hued digitally created artwork, which has a zany, retro feel. These work in happy conjunction with Synder's accessible, comical text. Kids who like a little chaos in their fairy tales will enjoy this offering, and maybe learn a lesson about not always demanding more. Copyright 2017 Booklist Reviews.

Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

In a dry-humored modern fairy tale, Snyder (Swan: The Life and Dance of Anna Pavlova) explores the concept of less is more as she introduces King Jasper, a young royal who is eager to add some excitement to his kingdom. After Jasper asks the Wizard to bring a dragon into the picture, the creature smashes through a window and starts lighting "tiny fires everywhere." What better to stomp out those fires than robots? Each magically summoned addition to the kingdom brings new problems, even a passel of kittens, meant to pacify local children (they're upset over having to wait to go flying with the new superheroes in town). French illustrator Damant's bright and cheery illustrations bring a Mary Blair–meets-Pixar aesthetic to the pages, which is ideally suited to the way Snyder blends contemporary and classic details; Damant gives the Wizard and King Jasper fittingly regal outfits, but also Converse-style sneakers. Messages about contentedness and good citizenship land with a light touch, including Jasper's eventual understanding that a good king takes responsibility for the messes he makes. Ages 4–8. Author's agent: Tina Wexler, ICM. (Sept.) Copyright 2017 Publisher Weekly.

Review by School Library Journal Reviews

PreS-K—In this modern-day fairy-tale, a dark-skinned king orders his wizard to conjure up a dragon to add a little fun to his picture-perfect kingdom. When the addition of dragons makes a mess, King Jasper orders the wizard to conjure more and more things in hopes of solving the growing list of problems. In the end, King Jasper ends up making a friend, which fills a void he didn't even realize existed, and, with the help of his new friend and the wizard, he cleans up the messes, this time without magic. Vibrant, cartoon digital artwork is appealing and draws upon the illustrator's background as a character designer with experience in children's television animation. The message is a little muddled, which makes it difficult to connect the dots from King Jasper's wishing for fun to filling a void in his life that requires a friend. VERDICT Despite the humor and visual appeal of this modern-day fairy tale, the story's message is hard to decipher and may be lost on young readers. A strictly additional purchase.—Samantha Lumetta, Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County Copyright 2017 School Library Journal.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

When Jasper the little king gets bored, he asks his wizard for a dragon, setting off a chain of events that leads to dire consequences--and a new friend.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

King Jasper can order his wizard to conjure up anything at all: dragons, robots, superheroes, even rainbow-colored kittens—which leads to a magical mess only he can clean up.A hilarious, modern fairy tale, The King of Too Many Things will keep readers guessing with the turn of every page, while showing how always wanting more can ultimately lead to less happiness.

Review by Publisher Summary 3

King Jasper can order his wizard to conjure up anything at all: dragons, robots, superheroes, even rainbow-colored kittens'which leads to a magical mess only he can clean up.A hilarious, modern fairy tale, The King of Too Many Things will keep readers guessing with the turn of every page, while showing how always wanting more can ultimately lead to less happiness.

Review by Publisher Summary 4

King Jasper can order his wizard to conjure up anything at all: dragons, robots, superheroes, even rainbow-colored kittens—which leads to a magical mess only he can clean up.A hilarious, modern fairy tale, The King of Too Many Things will keep readers guessing with the turn of every page, while showing how always wanting more can ultimately lead to less happiness.