Not The Besta’ Scieszka (Shess-ka)

If you have a really offbeat sense of humor like me, then you’ll like this author with a weird name. Jon Scieszka. Even though his name looks hard to pronounce, it really isn’t. It’s pronounced Shess-ka.

You’ve probably heard of him. He has written over twenty books, including the chapter book series, The Time Warp Trio. He also wrote The Stinky Cheeseman and other fairly stupid tales.

Although he works with other illustrators, my favorite books are the ones with Lane Smith. He has such a quirky style.

Before reading this particular book, I loved all of his books. Not this one. It’s called BALONEY. It’s not a new book. It was published in 2001, but I though that it was still worthy of a review. It’s about a little alien named Henry P. Baloney who is late for school yet again. He has to have a really good and believable excuse or his teacher, Miss Bugscuffle, is going to give him Permanent Lifelong Detention.

He, of course, comes up with many excuses. You see, he would have come on time but he lost his trusty zimulis (pencil in Latvian), then he found it on his deski (Swahili for desk), but someone put his deski in a torakku (Japanese for truck). Don’t worry about understanding it. Scieszka provides a decoder at the end of the book.


The book has a great silver cover, the illustrations are eye-catching and the text is witty, but something is missing. This book didn’t catch my attention like his other books. It’s amusing, but it just isn’t what I have come to expect from Scieszka. He is a victim of his own success. He has written such great books, that when he writes a book that is just good, but not great, it is a little disappointing.

Even though I didn’t like this one, this is only one of his book. The rest are excellent. This guy is one of my favorite children books authors. I would highly recommend his books and his website. He created a website just for guys. It’s called Guys Read. I will do a post on that later. As for the book, who knows, just because I didn’t like it, it doesn’t mean that you won’t. Check it out.


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