Elves Are the Worst!

S. & S. (The Worst! Series). Sept. 2023. 40p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9781665921794.
PreS-Gr 3–Gilbert the Goblin returns in the latest installment of “The Worst!” picture book series. This time, he sets out to prove that elves don’t deserve to hog “all the holiday spotlight.” Gilbert tries to make elves sound boring by showing some of their daily routine with familiar elves from pop culture: “hanging out inside trees baking cookies” (Keebler elves), “lounging around all day on various shelves” (Elf on the Shelf), and “pouring bowl after bowl of the world’s loudest cereal” (Rice Krispies elves). In order to further prove his point, Gilbert heads to Santa’s workshop to try his hand at making toys with somewhat disastrous results. Many of the pages are divided into panels, and the text is in speech bubbles, making the book a hybrid picture book/graphic novel that works incredibly well. Readers will love the silly illustrations and the feel-good ending in which Gilbert learns he can befriend the elves.
VERDICT Readers will laugh out loud. A must-have for the holiday shelves.

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