Rodney loses it! by Michael Gerard Bauer
Ill. by Chrissie Krebs. Omnibus, 2017. ISBN 9781742991900
(Age: 4+) Highly recommended. Anger, Drawing. Rodney loves to draw, so much so that he draws just about everywhere. He has a range of pens with which to draw, but one is his special favourite. This pen is so special, that he has given it a name, Penny, and has even been known to kiss Penny, so thrilled is by his favourite pen. One day while sitting at his desk, drawing, Penny disappears. He has lost things before: his bow tie, his rubber duck, his keys but he has always found them. Losing Penny causes him great distress, and the path of his distress is revealed through this very funny picture book.
In rhyming stanzas, Bauer shows Rodney losing it as he searches for Penny without success. Readers will recognise the symptoms: rummaging through everything, looking in the most unlikely places, retracing your steps. But all to no avail, Rodney loses his cool and falls down broken hearted. Bauer cleverly shows readers the steps they should take when trying to find something, and the outcome when the thing being searched for cannot be found. In revealing Rodney's eventual finding of the pen, readers will see sometimes things can be found when another search is made. The story underlines the anger that some feel when something is lost, but also shows its resolution as the lost object is found once calm has been restored.
Krebs' illustrations add another level of humour to the tale, showing Rodney at the highs and lows of the problem of having, then losing something precious. Children will see the problem illuminated before their eyes in illustrations full of life and movement, and learn a lesson from the tale.