Written & Illustrated by: Matthew McElligott
Published in 1998
Genre: Picture Book
Grade Level: 1-3
Summary: Last summer Uncle Frank came for a short visit, then ended up staying for months. He found a “signal” showing that there were dinosaur bones buried in the back yard, so he started digging. Then he was looking for oil. Then treasure became the goal, or so he claimed. In reality, Uncle Frank was making an apartment for himself underground in the back yard. His apartment was coming along nicely, until one day the plumber (who was installing a hot tub) actually found something! Now Uncle Frank is welcome back anytime.
There were two things I really liked about this book: the cover and the font. The cover was really bright and interesting. I thought the illustrations would be pretty good, but that’s probably because the only human parts shown were a couple feet and a forehead. Once I got into the book I discovered that the illustrations were not so great. The illustrations of the people, in particular, felt really awkward.
As far as the story is concerned, I liked the idea but felt it was poorly executed. The plot felt rushed, and I thought it could have been a lot better if the author had taken his time and added more details. The text was also lacking in that it was made up of mostly dialogue.
Final Thoughts: While I somewhat enjoyed the story in this book, I felt it could have been a lot better. The awkwardness of the writing combined with the lackluster illustrations made this book less than enjoyable.
I give Uncle Frank’s Pit two stars.