Hello, friends! Our book today is I Need All Of It, written by Petra Postert and illustrated by Jens Rassmus, a whimsical look at the “treasures” that children pick up.
While Jim is helping his dad sort laundry, Dad finds a pocket full of odds and ends that Jim has picked up: a button, a rock, a key. He makes to throw them out, but Jim stops him, explaining that he needs all those things! That warped and rusty key? Actually the key to the trunk of a nasty magician, and the only thing keeping him from his wicked magic tricks. The button? It belonged to a sailor, who had to cut it off in the jungle to save himself from a sticky situation. The rock? Actually the very top of a mountain, bitten off by a giant. Dad listens to these stories of provenance with fascination, then attempts to join in by producing a paper clip and wondering what its backstory is, but Jim simply looks at him oddly – it’s just a paper clip!
Man, I was really digging this one until the end. As someone who used to collect my own “treasures” as a child, I know how those little bits and baubles can inspire the imagination of children. I really enjoyed the conversational play between Jim and his dad, and the far-fetched stories of his treasures. But then when Dad tried to start a story of his own, Jim treats him a bit coldly, then leaves – end of book. It’s probably an accurate joke, but it stops the story’s warm feeling in its tracks. The illustrations are great, especially the juxtaposition of the simpler art for Jim and Dad next to the richly colored and detail fantasy sequences. The length was good, but JJ seemed to be getting a little antsy during the lengthy bits of dialogue. A great premise with an uneven execution, but worth a read for lovers of collecting and the imagination it can inspire, so we’ll call it Baby Bookworm approved.
(Note: A copy of this book was provided to The Baby Bookworm by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.)