This weekend I discovered a new addition to my list of favorite children’s picture books, right up there with the charmingly adorable Biscuit series: David Wiesner’s Mr. Wuffles!. It contains hardly any words, but oh, the illustrations! I cannot recall ever laughing out loud at a picture book before. They’re incredibly detailed and could not have been drawn by anyone but a human who’s spent time observing the humorously peculiar world of cats. I’ve lived with cats for 25 years; trust me, this man knows cats!
There’s a lot going on in this virtually wordless story of a cat who decides that a tiny spaceship filled with little green men makes a much more interesting toy than any of those store-bought things his human brings home. The aliens are forced to make a mad dash to safety underneath a heating vent and recruit some unlikely accomplices to their escape plan in the world behind the living room wall. The action involving the aliens and their new allies is quite cleverly drawn. In fact, the entire story is so cleverly wrought that I see something new every time I page through the book. The illustrations are as much for the adults as anyone. It takes a real gift to convey a story entirely in pictures.
Mr. Wuffles! has quickly become one of my all-time favorite children’s books. I love, love, love it.