Nothing Like a Puffin, written by Sue Solstis and illustrated by Bob Kolar
Then it gets a little silly, or so you think... "A ladder is nothing like a puffin. It has steps you climb up to get somewhere high. A house is nothing like a puffin. A house has windows and doors. "
"A newspaper, to be sure, is nothing like a puffin. A newspaper is shaped like a rectangle and made out of paper. A newspaper has pages. It is black and white. But wait -" And with that, Soltis' slippery logic takes one turn and then another.
From there, Soltis uses objects and creatures that are seemingly nothing like a puffin (a snake, a goldfish, a shovel, a helicopter) and shows us how they are, in fact, like a puffin in some ways. For the finale, and if you know anything about puffins you might have seen this coming, Soltis compares a puffin to a penguin. Indeed, it does seem like they have so many things in common that perhaps a puffin is not that one of a kind, amazing creature we thought him to be at the start of the book? Maybe the penguin and puffin are two of a kind? But, Soltis (and the puffin) have something up their sleeves...
Kids love animals, especially those that look like they are actually mash-ups of a few other, more common animals and for that reason alone they will love Nothing Like a Puffin. Add to that Kolar's brightly colored, crisply kooky artwork and you have a hit. Maybe Soltis and Kolar will consider lending their talents to one of my favorite, uncommon animals? I just don't know what rhymes with narwhal . . .