I Ate a Cicada Today
by Jeff Crossan
Synopsis: Based on a song of outrageous rhymes, I Ate a Cicada Today is a humorous children's picture book illustrated in ink and watercolor with an accompanying CD. Each two-page spread features a verse about a different animal or insect including such fanciful scenarios as "I peppered a leopard today" and "I hid a giant squid today." The CD is a guitar/vocal performance of the song by author/illustrator Jeff Crossan, who interjects each verse with a short spoken aside to provide added comic punch to the zany lyrics. 16 verses of wild and wacky rhymes, each humorously illustrated in ink and watercolor drawings sure to make both children and grownups laugh. Kids can read along, sing along or just listen to the CD of the song.
Jeff Crossan is an award-winning, Emmy nominated songwriter. His hits include the number one country tune , "You re Gonna Ruin My Bad Reputation," which received a BMI Million Air Award. A graduate of the University of Richmond with a degree in journalism, he is a former newspaper reporter/ photographer, music journalist and syndicated radio show writer. For several years, his cartoons appeared in the Presbyterian Voice.
Hope's review...along with Camille (10y) and Lily May (7): The story/song is very imaginative. Great rhymes that will leave you laughing even after you close the book. Lily May has only listened to it all the way through once and when I asked her about it a few days later she was able to quote almost every one of the verses main lines (...ate a cicada...hid a squid...photograph a giraffe...turtle in a girdle...etc). This shows how the story/song is inspirationally designed to grab the child's imagination. Our first attempt at reading the book was a let down though. I was asked to turn it off after two verses. Second attempt was with Camille singing along and that kept Lily May engaged. Although a wonderful book it is way too long for the age group designed for. Also, the county/folk song tempo is not contemporary and immediately engaging for kids in this day and age. This is the only reason I lowered my star rating. I'm not a good read aloud person so I used the cd. But anyone with a good storytelling voice would outshine the cd in a heartbeat. The book could survive without the cd but not vice versa. 4 stars
I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.