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The Wrench
Cover of The Wrench
The Wrench
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Bob's tricycle is broken and he needs a wrench to fix it. He ventures out to buy one at the Megamart, where slick salesman, Mr. Mart, convinces Bob that it's not a wrench he needs, but a fridge...
Bob's tricycle is broken and he needs a wrench to fix it. He ventures out to buy one at the Megamart, where slick salesman, Mr. Mart, convinces Bob that it's not a wrench he needs, but a fridge...
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Description-

  • Bob's tricycle is broken and he needs a wrench to fix it. He ventures out to buy one at the Megamart, where slick salesman, Mr. Mart, convinces Bob that it's not a wrench he needs, but a fridge hat...singing pajamas...a screaming machine! Bob spends all his money on things that he really doesn't need and before he knows it has no money and no wrench.


    Lively illustrations and quirky hand-lettering make The Wrench a delight to read while also conveying an important message about consumerism and excess.


    Orca Book Publishers is proud to offer this early ebook edition as part of our new Digital First initiative, with the release of the print edition to follow.

About the Author-

  • Elise Gravel is an award-winning author and illustrator. Well known for her odd critters and unusual drawing style, Elise creates books that are popular with adults and children alike. In 2012 she won the Governor General's Award for French-language illustration for La clé à molette, the original French version of The Wrench. This is her third book with Orca, following A Potato on a Bike and I am Scary. Elise lives in Montreal with her husband, two daughters and two cranky cats.

Reviews-

  • Kirkus

    June 1, 2020
    Bob--a cartoon character with a human body and a large, pink face that seems to merge a rabbit, a pig, and a badger--is repeatedly distracted from buying a wrench to fix his tricycle. When a short bout of searching turns up no wrench, Bob goes to "Megamart, the ultra-giant, supersized megastore where you can find ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING." There, Mr. Mart, a blue-faced, mustachioed figure in a cowboy hat, persuades Bob to buy an absurd contraption called a "fridge-hat" instead. When Bob shows off his purchase to friends Pedro and Lucien, they ridicule him. A third friend, Paulette--whose pink tail pokes out from a green dress--reminds Bob about his mission to buy a wrench. (Like Bob, his friends are brightly colored anthropomorphic creatures.) Twice more, Bob goes wrench shopping, and twice more, similar episodes ensue, as gullible Bob buys musical pajamas and then a screaming machine. Each time he is confronted with his mistake, Bob stuffs his new purchase into his closet. The punchline wraps up a simple, silly tale that warns against the dangers of sales persuasion and conspicuous consumption. The writing is made for reading aloud with different voices, and the silliness and repetition will keep the youngest viewers entertained. Unfortunately, each time Pedro, Lucien, and Paulette react to Bob's foolish behavior, the creatures' reactions are both unkind and gender-stereotyped, the two male-presenting characters jeering and the female-presenting one demonstrating practicality. The illustrations are colorful and comical, in an offbeat palette. Imaginative--but lacking heart. (Picture book. 3-5)

    COPYRIGHT(2020) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • Publisher's Weekly

    July 13, 2020
    Gravel (I Am Scary) pokes fun at consumer culture in this lighthearted if thin depiction of overconsumption. When Bob, a scrawny pink bespectacled bunny, loses a tricycle wheel one morning, his search for a wrench takes him to the local Megamart. Gravel’s hip, colorful scenes loudly emphasize the overwhelming explosion of products that Bob encounters. “Buy this!” a sign screams, and, prompted by a cowboy-like salesman with a knack for upselling, Bob does just that, over the course of several trips purchasing, not the wrench, but a fridge-hat, musical pajamas, and a screaming machine. As Bob returns home with these outlandish objects, his friends question their value, leveling up their confusion with every purchase: of the screaming machine, “Why did you buy this monstrosity?” Unfortunately for the tricycle, Bob’s shopping sprees have left him broke. Opening his closet in search of loose change unleashes an avalanche of stuff in which—buried beneath a Rubik’s cube, disguise glasses, and more—is the very wrench Bob needed all along. Has a lesson been learned by the seemingly helpless Bob? Gravel doesn’t say with this disappointingly abrupt ending, but surely cleaning up so much junk would make any bunny think twice. Ages 3–5.

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