#906 – The Truth about My Unbelievable Summer . . . by Davide Cali and Benjamin Chaud

Today is Cheer Up the Lonely Day, a day to make those around you, especially those who are a lone, smile. I think today’s book will easily make everyone smile.
truthabout summervacationcover The Truth About My Unbelievable Summer . . .
Written by Davide Cali
Illustrated by Benjamin Chaud
Chronicle Books   07/01/2016
44 pages   Ages 6—9

Junior Library Guild Selection

or does it . . . ?

IT’S THE FIRST-DAY-OF-SCHOOL MOMENT OF TRUTH: What really happened over the summer break? A curious teacher wants to know! The epic explanation: What started out as a day at the beach turned into a globe-spanning treasure hunt with hijinks, an outrageous cast of characters, and one mischievous bird! At least, that’s what the student says. Is this yet another tall tale, or is it the truth just waiting to be discovered?” [back cover]

The young student is back once more, telling his teacher what happened. Trouble is the teachers can never be quite sure this student is telling the truth. He has already lost his homework to two dogs: one that ate his homework and the other that ate the first dog. And he was late to school because a huge ape mistook the school bus for a banana, leaving him without a ride. Now, this young boy returns to school from a summer break, faced with a classic assignment: What did I do on my summer vacation? The boy stands and begins,

UnbelievableSUmmer_INT_FnCrx.indd“Well, you may not believe this, but . . . I found a message in a bottle . . . it was a treasure map!”

Just as he notices the big “X,” a bird grabs the map out of his hands. He and his dog take off in hot pursuit of the bird . . .

An actress helps him find a duplicate treasure map. Back on track, the boy and dog continue pursuing the treasure in a hot air balloon, when a bird—suspiciously like the first—busts the balloon, sending the two crashing . . .

UnbelievableSUmmer_INT_FnCrx.inddA woman, eerily similar to the boy’s teacher, helps the lad find his treasure. Once he finds his “X-marks the spot,” the boy tries out the new unusual treasure. The boy can share and enjoy the treasure year-after-year. The biggest question in this summer vacation story is: who is the woman that keeps helping the boy?

The elusive treasure . . . and the boy’s summer vacation story, will have its readers eager for those awful vacation stories they listened to year after year. As a novelty-type book, exaggerating the ritual of excuses for laughs and smiles, The Truth about My Unbelievable Summer . . . accomplishes its goal.

The Truth about My Unbelievable Summer . . . remains as inventive as the first two editions. Cali (The Bear’s Song, The Bear’s Sea Escape, The Bear’s Surprise) and Chaud make a wonderful team. They understand middle grade humor and their tongue-in-cheek approach will have kids and adults laughing at both the excuse and the image. Teachers may outwardly groan, but they are laughing on the inside. Cali has taken the excuse form to higher levels than the most exuberant kid has. Add in Chaud’s creative illustrations and you have stories few could resist.

UnbelievableSUmmer_INT_FnCrx.inddIf you like silliness, or if you need more unbelievable excuses again this year, The Truth about My Unbelievable Summer . . . will have you and your kids giggling, grinning, and groaning, all with that magic transformative smile; the kind that instantly makes you feel good.

In the same style as I Didn’t Do My Homework Because . . . (reviewed here) and A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to School . . . (reviewed here), The Truth about My Unbelievable Summer . . . will make you laugh and think about all those excuses and stories you gave your middle grade teachers. Feeling bad yet?

THE TRUTH ABOUT MY UNBELIEVABLE SUMMER . . . Text copyright © 2016 by Davide Cali. Illustrations copyright © 2016 by Benjamin Chaud. Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Chronicle Books, San Francisco, CA.

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Find The Truth about My Unbelievable Summer . . . on Goodreads HERE.

Davide Cali:  http://www.davidecali.com/
Follow on Twitter  #davidecali
Fan Facebook Page:  https://www.facebook.com/Davide-Cali-164285603678359/

Benjamin Chaud:  https://www.facebook.com/benjamin.chaud.1
Follow on Twitter

Chronicle Books:  http://www.chroniclebooks.com/
Follow on Twitter          @ChronicleKids

Reprinted with permission from THE TRUTH ABOUT MY UNBELIEVABLE SUMMER . . . © 2016 by Davide Cali, Chronicle Books, Illustrations © 2016 by Benjamin Chaud.

Copyright © 2016 by Sue Morris/Kid Lit Reviews. All Rights Reserved

The Truth about My Unbelievable Summer . . .
Written by Davide Cali
Illustrated by Benjamin Chaud
Chronicle Books 07/01/2016


6 thoughts on “#906 – The Truth about My Unbelievable Summer . . . by Davide Cali and Benjamin Chaud

  1. Pingback: #1120 – A Funny Thing Happened at the Museum . . . by Davide Cali and Benjamin Chaud | Kid Lit Reviews

  2. Pingback: #1053 – When an Elephant Falls in Love by Davide Cali and Alice Lotti | Kid Lit Reviews

    • This one the teacher gets involved. Guess she got tired of all the crazy excuses. Twist is unexpected — but then I went back to page one and went through it again. Now I could see all the ways the twist worked up to it’s finale. Cali and Chaud are a wonderful team.


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