Local children’s author, student illustrator bring clumsy character to life
by Melody Wright, Sept 13, 2018 | Photo by Will Crooks
Philbert LaRue’s journey begins with a hole in his shoe but by the last page ends with a valuable lesson.
The clumsy 65-year-old man is trapped in a comedy of errors.
“He’s kind of an ‘aw, shucks’ type character,” Greenville children’s author Matt Pelicano says. “Bad things are happening to him, and he never really figures out why.”
The recently released picture book “Philbert LaRue Had a Hole in His Shoe” is written in a Dr. Seuss rhyming style.
“Rhyming is fun because you can do things with a rhyme that are more clever and more surprising than you would with prose,” Pelicano says.
The fun-to-read book also teaches a moral...
"A delightful and hilarious book about the dangers of taking shortcuts in life. I don't know what I loved more -- Matt Pelicano's Seuss-like rhymes or Ashley Spikings' perpetually surprised sun.
"Philbert LaRue is a fun and funny character!"
Author of The Weight of Mercy and the Branigan Powers mystery series
“What a delight to read Matt Pelicano’s wonderful children’s story, “Philbert LaRue had a Hole in his Shoe.” It is a story with a playful rhyme and an engaging rhythm. I started to giggle as soon as I read the title and never really stopped until I reached the end.
Pelicano’s point is made perfectly clear: that when we put off fixing a small glitch it can turn into a big problem.
This story is a marvelously fresh approach to learning a very important lesson. Philbert LaRue does indeed rue the day he decides not to fix the hole in his shoe! A must read for adults and children alike.”
Writer, Actor, Comic
"I wondered why I was chosen to review this children’s book. Then I remembered the pair of shoes (one with a hole) that have been riding around in the backseat of my car for months now. LaRue’s plight literally touched my sole.
"Matt Pelicano authors this delightful tale, echoing Dr. Seuss and Shel Silverstein in his playful use of verse. Lines like, “He sat there just shivering in the cold autumn air; with his shirt in his shoe and the rain in his hair; with his hat on his toes and his saggy old pants; and a pot on his foot, from his favorite plants” will enthrall small listeners.
"How does Philbert get into these predicaments? Children may not understand the phrase, “A stitch in time saves nine,” but they will be able to anticipate disaster for Philbert with each new crazy method he employs. His hilarious mishaps will hopefully help them learn to search for more sensible solutions.
"Illustrator Ashley Spikings cleverly includes an observant sun, a companion cat, and other concerned creatures, keeping children engaged on every page. This is a great read-a-loud for youngsters who like to laugh and adults who love the sounds of children’s laughter."