Matthew Gray Gubler
Just a quick look at green-skinned Rumple Buttercup with his wonky teeth, odd sized feet and just three strands of hair might indicate that this creature is something out of the ordinary – weird – so the author tells us at the outset of his immediate interest snarer.
Convinced that his unusual appearance with scare people, his residence is a sewer – albeit nicely decorated,
where he listens in to conversations of passers-by, longing to be a participant but making do with pretence.
The one time Rumple feels safe to sally forth as part of the community, is his favourite event, the Annual Pajama Jam Cotton Candy Pancake Parade; a day nobody will, he thinks, notice him amid the carnival revels.
Having eagerly anticipated the day all year, his excitement rises but then on the morning of the event, there’s a distinct lack of banana peel in the bin beside his home.
Devastated and deciding he must stay below ground and miss all the fun, the creature suddenly hears a voice calling down the drain to him.
What he discovers is that he’s not quite as strange as he’s always thought – unique perhaps, but then we’re all strangely different in our own ways.
So let’s join him in a celebratory wave and an acknowledgement that self-acceptance, flaws and all, is the way to go and that there are others out there who will celebrate our individuality, no matter what.
This delectably quirky, slightly surreal offering – a blend of picture book and chapter book – is one that will appeal to a wide readership, young and not so young.