Friday, September 20, 2013

Review Me Twice: I Can Lick 30 Tigers Today! by Dr. Seuss

This week, we've been talking all about Dr. Seuss.  We decided to review one of his lesser known books, I Can Lick 30 Tigers Today! And Other Stories.

It's a fun book, especially if you're thinking in terms of kids, because The Cat in the Hat (he's not named that, but he looks identical TO the Cat in the Hat) spend the whole book thinking up excuses NOT to lick 30 tigers.  One gets dismissed because he has curly hair, another few due to dirty fingernails.  I mean, it's just completely nonsensical.

The rhyme scheme is a little different than his other books (usually it's aabb or abab.  This one is abba).  Honestly, I think that it doesn't flow as well as his other books.  It doesn't have that "beat" that you find in books like The Lorax.

Later on the rhyme scheme changes, for my favorite story in the book.  It's this little girl who thought a Glunk up (he was a Glunk that got Thunk.) and she has to try and unthink him because he's doing all of these terrible things.  One of them is calling long distance, which just made me chuckle because that's not really a thing anymore.

I also like that Dr. Seuss makes up words and it's completely fine.  Like Glunk, for instance.  The man made it up because it rhymed with thunk and you know what?  I'M TOTALLY OK WITH THAT.  It works and I buy it and his made up words are just so natural, you almost think that they should be real.

The book wasn't my favorite Dr. Seuss, but it does certainly make you realize why the man became so ridiculously famous.

What a mild disappointment. I thought that this would be some untapped gold mine of Seussian greatness, but it wasn't, really. Just more Seuss. And if someone was really, really into Seuss, that would be a great thing. I'm not, so it was just a little more of something I enjoy to a degree. So that's good, I guess. (Do I sound underwhelmed? I was underwhelmed.)

I do have to admit that, knowing that this was Seuss, I thought the title literally referred to licking tigers. Like, with one's tongue. I know it sounds weird, but look at absolutely any other Seuss book and you'll understand why I thought that was the case. But really, it's the antiquated slang version of "lick," as in fight them successfully, beat them up, pound them to a pulp, pulverize, contriturate (yes, I went to the thesaurus for that one). But to be fair, the book is from 1969.

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