Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

A Camping Spree With Mr. Magee

A Camping Spree With Mr. Magee

Chris Van Dusen
Picture Book
For ages 5 to 7
Chronicle Books, 2003   ISBN: 978-0811836036

Early one morning Mr. Magee hitches his camper to his Rambler and he sets off for the mountains with only his little dog Dee for company. Mr. Magee is thrilled to be going camping and can't wait to be up in the mountains, in the fresh air where "the views are fantastic" and where "there's no one around."

The two friends find a perfect place to set up camp. They build a camp fire and cook hot dogs and roast marshmallows. All is well as they climb into their bunks in the camper and go to sleep. All is well until a bear comes bumbling up, attracted by the smell of sweet marshmallows. This particular bear has rather poor eyesight, and as it stumbles around trying to find the marshmallows, it manages to unhitch the car from the camper. The result of this unfortunate occurrence is that both the car and the camper begin to roll down the hill. The camper (with Mr. Magee and Dee in it) ends up in a stream and soon they find themselves heading for a waterfall. What on earth is to be done now? How can they save themselves from this terrible situation?

Children will love this wonderfully illustrated picture book with its deliciously funny rhyming text, its vibrant full page illustrations, and its perfectly ridiculous story. Anyone who has been camping and who has experienced typical camping disasters will appreciate this unusual camping story.