Friday, April 17, 2015

A Book Full of Shenanigans

I always encourage parents to keep picture books around long after they think their kids have moved on.  So many of these books have humor and lessons that are lost on the youngest readers, and as your kids get older they will appreciate some of the more sophisticated story lines that the best picture books provide.

Today, in fact, I have a picture book that is decidedly targeted at an older audience.  Nothing about this book feels juvenile, and the story about an international con man will have kids clamoring to share with you the scheming and shenanigans that only the best master of deception can pull off!

Don't forget to Follow One Great Book on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and by email so that you won't miss an opportunity to train you kids in the art of the con.  Although a long prison sentence at Alcatraz will dissuade them from using their new found skills!

Title: Tricky Vic

Author: Greg Pizzoli

Target: Grades 2 and up

What this book is about:  
This book is about Tricky Vic (not his given name), a real life con man, who makes those guys in Oceans Eleven look like amateurs.  Turns out he was an international thief who tricked people in buying money making machines, counterfeit bills and even sold the eiffel tower - more than once!  Of course he made brilliant get aways, shimming down a bedsheet to break out of prison while pretending to be a window washer. 

Why I love this book: 
Who wouldn’t love a book where the deception is on, and it isn’t fiction but a true account of an artist - con artist that is.  Even the artwork is deceptively entertaining.  Using mixed media,  Pizzoli has created a story that flows effortlessly.  The simplicity of the illustrations are striking and the flow of the story keeps the reader entertained.  While we see the faces of all the people he encounters, Tricky Vic’s face remains simply a thumbprint.  Clever stuff.  Creating it as a picture book means the story is full of facts, but never bogged down as we are charmed along with the marks in the story.  

Who this book is for: 
This picture book is for an older crowd and they will be pleased.  It does not look juvenile and the content respects it’s older audience.  Pizzoli does not deliver a moral lesson on the deceptions of Tricky Vic but his death after years in Alcatraz shows that he does get his just deserts. 

Final thoughts: 
Bringing in Al Capone, Bootleggers and Alcatraz this book factually cements itself in history while still sharing the fun of a real life “con man.”

To purchase this book:
Click on the following link to connect to Amazon: Tricky Vic: The Impossibly True Story of the Man Who Sold the Eiffel Tower  A portion of each purchase goes back to support this blog at no cost to you.  Thank you for your support.

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