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What is inside THIS box?
2019
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Summary

From the author of The Day the Crayons Quit comes a groundbreaking new friendship series!

Meet Monkey and Cake. Cake has lots of questions. Monkey has lots of answers. They are silly. They are curious. Sometimes they fight. But Monkey and Cake are always best friends. When Cake decides to build an exclusive fort, Monkey feels left out. But before long, Cake discovers that being alone in a fort is no fun! Will these friends be able to work together, and find room for both of them?

Trade Reviews
School Library Journal Review
K-Gr 2-This new series stars an impish little monkey and a personified slice of cake with a cherry on top of his head. Monkey and Cake are good friends. When Cake discovers Monkey sitting on top of a box, he asks what is inside. Monkey responds that a cat is in the box, but upon further questioning admits that the cat exists only when the box is closed. To up the ante, he also states that if Cake opens the box, the cat will disappear because the cat is MAGIC. Cake, as one would expect, is incredulous. They go back and forth and appear to be heading to a stalemate when Monkey advises Cake that he can think anything he wants about what is inside the box when it is closed. This invitation to imagination is priceless, and Cake soon declares that a dinosaur is inside. The whole Socratic debate begins anew with the two friends finally coming to an agreement that they will never know what is actually inside the box. Once they exit the scene, readers see a cat peeking out, and wouldn't you know it, when we turn the page, she is accompanied by a dinosaur. Daywalt (The Day the Crayons Quit) and Tallec (This Book Will Not Be Fun) have crafted a delightful, philosophical romp that will please and intrigue beginning readers. The end of the book contains several questions for children to ponder, which will prompt discussion and imaginative play. A nod to Schrödinger's cat is included for all quantum mechanics fans. VERDICT Funny and thought-provoking. A definite purchase for beginning reader collections.-Amy Nolan, St. Joseph Public Library, MI © Copyright 2019. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Booklist Review
On the theory that it's never too early to start considering the deep questions, Daywalt opens his Monkey & Cake series with the two friends literally, in Tallec's simply drawn cartoons, a monkey and a slice of personified cake engaging in a sometimes-heated exchange over a carton that, claims Monkey, contains a magic kitty that vanishes when, and only when, it's open. Cake has understandable doubts (and some theories of his own) but eventually, in easy-to-follow stages, comes around to the only logical position: that whatever is or is not in the box is more a matter of belief than something provable. Though a kitty labeled Schrödinger's cat does put in an appearance on the rear endpaper, the scenario is pitched in a way that will engage even the younger reaches of the intended audience. Deceptively written and formatted as an easy reader, this classic philosophical proposition is copublished with an equally accessible exercise in categorical dialectics titled This Is MY Fort!--John Peters Copyright 2019 Booklist
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