PEGASUS AND OOLOO MOOLOO
Volume 21 Number 4
This is a complicated adventure story about two friends, Micki and Daniel. While on a walk one day, they find a parrot whose name is Oolo Mooloo and a small pony named Pegasus. The four now continue through the forest until they come across a circus being set up. There, Pegasus is spotted by a "thin scrawny old man" and a "round dirty young man" with an empty dented truck with "Pony Rides" and "E. Vill & Son" on the side. They stealthily pursue the little pony with a coil of rope until the parrot saves the day by wailing like a police car siren and scaring them away.
Ruth Ohi's full-colour illustrations deftly show the different moods of the story, the light pastel greens and yellows of the forest versus the sombre, more threatening mood of the circus scenes, where the "baddies" are after the little pony.
However, I found there was a distressingly unfocused point of view. It seems as though the writer had not decided whose story this was going to be. Was it to be the story of one or both the children, the pony, or the parrot (who inadvertently ends up being the hero)? Without one (or even two) defined protagonists in this adventure tale, we have nowhere to put our sympathies. We therefore end up not being involved enough in the story to really care what happens.
Norma Charles is a teacher-librarian with Henderson Annex Elementary School in Vancouver, British Columbia.
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