The Untold Story
Every once in a while I come across a book I just HAVE to review because I love it SO MUCH I can’t even stand it! 7 Ate 9 is one of those books. This book was published in 2017, so it’s pretty new, but Tara Lazar is no debut author. She’s a highly regarded, multi-published author and writing instructor. Between the two of them, Tara and Ross are a star team. If you need a humorous mentor text – especially if you’re looking to write a numbers or letters concept book that also packs in puns and plot – I highly recommend picking this one up.
Publisher’s description: “6 has a problem. Everyone knows that 7 is always after him. Word on the street is that 7 ate 9. If that’s true, 6’s days are numbered. Lucky for him, Private I is on the case. But the facts just don’t add up. It’s odd. Will Private I put two and two together and solve the problem . . . or is 6 next in line to be subtracted?”
As you can tell from that teaser, this book is full of delightful puns and jokes. I’m a sucker for a cheesy play on words. Some of the puns may be over a young child’s head, but they will definitely tickle your funny bone. Meanwhile, your kids will be entertained by the story – an age-appropriate mystery – and will hopefully learn to recognize a few numbers and letters in the process.
I also adore the old fashioned gumshoe detective tone of the text, which is reminiscent of Dragnet. It’s a great read-aloud because each character has such a distinct voice. As I read it to my kids, I was mentally transported into a black-and-white detective show – complete with a bowler hat and cigar dangling from my lips. (P.S. I don’t smoke.)
The illustrations are great as well. The setting and color pallet perfectly match the tone of the text. And I’m sure it was no easy feat to make numbers and letters into cute and likable characters. My favorite is 8 (or is she 0?)
In sum – get to your library or bookstore right away and grab 7 Ate 9. It’s all that, plus more.