The Books

The Red Lemon

by Bob Staake

One Potato Review

This might be a classic. But then it would be too easy to find. The lemon of the title is a sort of mutant growing among millions of the usual – and beloved – suspects. Fully the first half of this book concerns itself with nothing other than just how beloved these are: tangy, not mellow – and yellow! Perfect for pies and the Fourth of July! Old Farmer McPhee’s enthusiasm for the fruits of his labor – heck, even the labor of his labor – remains palpable, and would probably constitute reason enough to enjoy this, even putting aside his subsequent outrage at nature for having interrupted these reveries with something so florid, so flagrant, so… rude! Talk about seeing red: the trees, the ground, even the sky turn a menacing hue. Splutters the farmer, with a jingoistic fervor recognizable in any era:

“When people bite into a
fruit that they chew,
they count on it being
the right-colored hue!”

Staake’s palate and bubbly landscapes are sufficient to hypnotize even the youngest of readers, but here is also a stirring little fable about the magic of thinking differently.

Related Blog Entries