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.
Submitter: This bizarre book includes makeup tips, skits based on Bible verses, and other odd ideas – I included scans of my two favorites, “clownseling” & Marriage enrichment. Thankfully for those scared of clowns, the library’s name label obscures most of the clown’s face on the cover.
Holly: For that, Mary is grateful. I bet she’s still creeped out, though, actually. Books on clown ministry aren’t so weird for a public library collection. This one is…yes, you guessed it…old. Does this sound remotely intriguing to any married couples?
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?