Submitter: This book is on the shelves at [a public library], recently discovered during inventory. All the staff who looked at it immediately thought “pedophile.” Awful cover art added to the general ugh quality of the book.
Holly:Good for your staff for doing inventory! Mary and I are big promoters of inventory. As for this book, the WorldCat description says, “Barbara takes a clown workshop and finds some friends who help her get through problems at home.” It’s juvenile fiction, and lots of public libraries own copies. I know a lot of people (Mary included) have clown phobias and think clowns are weird and creepy. The juggling guy on the cover isn’t even painted up like a clown, though, so he’s not too creepy. Maybe he needs to go back to clown school, or maybe he hasn’t graduated yet. He looks like a teenager to me, too, so I don’t know about the pedophile bit…but I do know that the very mention of clowns puts people like Mary into a cold sweat. I also think that the artwork is very 80s. (Submitter said 2001, but WorldCat shows 1999 for this title.) The cover is not really selling the story that WorldCat describes, but other than that it’s not so bad. Do weed if it has become a shelf-sitter, though.
Charles the Clown’s Guide to Children’s Parties
This reminds me of the time a library Mary and I worked for had a clown for a summer reading party. Mary was given the job of giving the clown her check for payment. Now, keep in mind the level of absolute fear and loathing that Mary has for clowns. She was told to suck it up and go pay the clown. She walked up to the clown and stuck out her hand with the check, not making eye contact. Just as she was making a hasty retreat, the clown put on her best squeaky clown voice, tilted her head to one side, and said, “Thank you, Miss Mary!” Mary ran away from that clown faster than I’ve ever seen her move in my life.
The children on the cover of this book are obviously much braver than Miss Mary. He’s strangling that monkey!
Happy Halloween Everyone!
FYI, I don’t believe my retreat was that quick. I would also like to say my clown issues do not in anyway influence my choices in collection. I just think that clowns are scary and freakish and evil incarnate. That said, please enjoy some previous clown posts.
I sure everyone loves the “clownseling” post. Just sayin’ I would have to divorce my husband if he ever suggested such a thing.
Clowns in the New Year: Not really ABOUT clowns but there is freakish picture of clowns on skis that really say Happy New Year.
Holidays and Festivals: New Year
Anonymous Submitter: “Every single picture in this book is better than the cover picture. Worse yet, there is no mention of clown skiing anywhere in the text. Everyone at work let out a little sound of terror when viewing the clowns. I had to turn the cover upside down to write this email.”
Holly: Mary, avert your eyes. (She has a bit of a clown phobia. Her new co-worker left a severed clown head on her desk recently, which I LOVE!) What do these clowns have to do with New Year? What if someone new to the U.S. picked up this book to find out how Americans celebrate the New Year, and then showed up to a party decked out like a clown?