As the oldest sister in a family of four, I immediately related to Davey, the sheep who, for the first four years of his life enjoyed the good life. Then, Petey came along, and then Mike and then Stu until there were 12 other brothers! It should be mentioned that Davey’s family is a family of sheep, not people, but people of all ages will relate to Davey’s plight as each brother appears and further exasperates poor Davey. Davey’s main problem with all of those brothers is how they try to copy everything he does. The book is composed of hilarious illustrations of Davey riding his bike, followed by his 12 brothers, Davey asking for Toot Loops for breakfast and all 12 brothers wanting the same breakfast and finally, Davey glaring at his brothers and pulling his hair in frustration and all 12 doing it right back to him. Eventually, Davey’s brothers start to develop their own interests, and Davey finds himself all alone in his empty bedroom, that is, until a new little sister saves him from his loneliness.
The illustrations in this picture book are certainly minimalist. The sheep are portrayed in their home through line drawings and only small splashes of color appear in the mostly black and white art work. But the illustrations are where the humor of this story shines through. There is a hilarious spread of Davey leading his 12 brothers down the street on their bikes and another hilarious picture of Mother and Father sheep attempting to sit in easy chairs at the end of a hard day, but their straight sheep legs and puffy bodies really aren’t made for chairs and consequently, they are shown sliding out of them. The story is written in rhyme and the lilting tone will keep even very young listeners engaged. A hilarious pick for anyone who has ever been a sibling, is about to become a sibling or has dreamed of having a sibling.
Posted by: Kelly