Library : Book Reviews > Don’t Laugh, Joe

Don’t Laugh, Joe
By Keiko Kasza

Review by: Lori Plach

One of the more popular tricks that people teach their dogs is to “play dead.” Playing dead is a requirement in the wild to fool predators. Joe Possum is a fun loving possum who has to learn this very important lesson and ultimately, survival. Joe is very giggly and always making his other animal friends laugh. Joe’s mother promises that she will make him a bug pie when he learns how to play dead. Whenever they were practicing, Joe would always laugh. It didn’t matter if she tried sniffing his fur like a fox, poking him like a coyote or shaking him like a wildcat, the result was always the same. Joe’s mother become very concerned about what would happen when real danger came. A grumpy old bear growls and Joe immediately plays dead. The bear sniffs him, poked Joe’s tummy and shakes him. Joe does his part so well that the bear starts to cry. The bear says that if anyone could make him laugh it would be Joe. The two of them realize that they both have taught each other a valuable lesson.

      Joe learns that not every thing is meant to be fun in life. The bear learns to relax and stop being so grouchy all the time. This book has been a favorite in our house since our daughter was 2. Keiko Kasza captures the different expressions beautifully. It provides valuable lessons in a nice blend of humor and facts.

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