The Adventures of the Dish and the Spoon

Book review by
Dawn Friedman, Common Sense Media
The Adventures of the Dish and the Spoon Book Poster Image
Tableware goes bad in sumptuously drawn tale.

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Kids say

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Positive messages

Bad behavior by Dish and Spoon leads to tragic consequences.

Violence & scariness

Dish is tied up to a chair and then on railroad tracks; police run with clubs raised.

Language

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Dish and Spoon tread on the seamier side of nursery tales. Loan-sharking, bank robbery, and criminal threats result in deportation and prison. While the criminal element may be too much for some families, it's important to note that Dish and Spoon are held responsible and do pay their debt to society.

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What's the story?

The Dish runs away with the Spoon and lives the high life until debt brings them crashing down.

Is it any good?

Parents who expect something in line with the original nursery rhyme will be surprised. This is more Mother Goose meets Law & Order, albeit a G-rated version.

Though the villainous slant will turn off some parents, many will enjoy it for the sumptuous and amusing illustrations. There's a lot to explore on every page spread; if kids keep their eyes open, they can catch cameos from other "Hey Diddle Diddle" cohorts. It's interesting to note the way money is treated in the pictures -- from the overflowing edges when Dish and Spoon are living the high life to the scattered broken remains when they bottom out at the mercy of the loan sharks.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the actual nursery rhyme first so kids know the roots of this fast-paced adventure. They can also talk about where Dish and Spoon made their mistakes. How many opportunities did they have to make different choices? What could they have done instead?

Book details

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