Saturday, July 6, 2013

The Bathing Costume or The Worst Vacation of My Life

The Bathing Costume or The Worst Vacation of My Life
by Charlotte Moundlic, illustrated by Olivier Tallec, translated by Claudia Zoe Bedrick
Enchanted Lion Books, 2013.   Unpaged.  Picture Book

     When Myron's family is getting ready to move, Myron is sent to stay with his grandparents for the summer.  He doesn't want to go because he has never been away from his mother before (a tease-worthy point from older brother Martin), and because he's worried there will be nothing to do except when his cousins (also teasers) arrive and then he will be the butt of all their jokes. Besides, in Myron's family, the year one turns eight he is required to jump off the ten-foot board at the swimming pool.  By himself.  But when Myron figures out how only one cousin a day actually has to take a shower in Grandma's spider-filled bathroom, he gets street cred with the cousins and they start to have fun, including biking without helmets over a homemade obstacle course. On the big day at the pool, Myron manages the ten-foot dive, even though his borrowed, too-big swimming suit (or as his Grandmother says, "bathing costume") comes mostly off because no one sees his bottom except his grandparents and they don't tell. Originally published in France, The Bathing Costume is a delight, Tallec's witty and expressive illustrations the perfect accompaniment to Moundlic's universal tale of the rigors and joys of childhood.

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