Giant Giant

Milky Way. Mar. 2022. 74p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9781990252082.
K-Gr 2–This quirky but straightforward story presents a playful, literal representation of what it means when a bully “steps all over” others, and the positive change a hand extended in friendship can inspire. The story introduces a small village where a giant orange boy makes regular visits to demand treats and to crush the terrified blue villagers’ homes for fun. Trouble arrives at the giant’s own door, however, when a pink “giant giant,” in the form of a heavily mustached man, arrives to threaten and bully him. The fact that the “giant giant” is an adult, rather than another kid, may affect how the readers connect with the story. By working together, the giant boy and the kind villagers stop the “giant giant” in a trap and share their lesson of kindness with him. While there are terms such as brat and bully that should be discussed with an adult, young listeners will easily recognize when the giants finally learn that no one deserves to be belittled. In Hewitt’s cartoonlike digital illustrations, dimension is used to great advantage to distinguish the characters, with coordinated font sizes to depict spoken or shouted dialogue in bold, black text. Set against an entirely yellow background, characters and small setting details are composed of simple shapes of few solid color hues, specifically light blue, orange, and hot pink. All are overlaid with black ink line details to suggest stylized forms, movements, and expressions, though also eccentric, old-fashioned dress.
VERDICT A plainspoken tale of the relativity of size and power, this belongs on SEL shelves.

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