Who Wet My Pants? (Bob Shea)

Hello, friends! Our book today is Who Wet My Pants?, written by Bob Shea and illustrated by Zachariah OHora, a silly yet sweet tale of compassion.

Returning with Troop 73’s donut order for breakfast, Rueben the bear (the scout leader) is shocked to find that – gasp! – SOMEONE HAS WET HIS PANTS. Not THEIR pants, mind you; someone else has wet RUEBEN’S pants. Shocked by this act of vandalism, Rueben withholds the donuts as he interrogates his embarrassed friends, all of whom kindly attempt to tell Rueben that wetting one’s pants is nothing to be ashamed of. Unwilling to take the blame, Rueben continues his investigation, retracing his steps and even entertaining the possibility that the pants themselves are defective. Will Rueben find the dastardly culprit? Or was the answer closer to home all along…?

Adorable and sweet. From the outset, it’s obvious that Rueben’s wild accusations and denial are the result of his avoiding blame and a publicly embarrassing situation, something that both kids and adults can sympathize with. And while Rueben’s hilarious antics handle the comedic aspects of the book, it’s his friends’ quiet acceptance, understanding, and compassion that provides an unexpected serving of pathos. By reminding Rueben that he has nothing to be ashamed of and offering to help him get cleaned up, even in the face of his accusations and lashing out, this comedy also becomes a nice lesson in empathy. OHora’s signature art style of thick lines, bold block colors, and expressive characters is perfect for the tone, and the illustrations are filled with fun details and nods to adult readers. The length is perfect, and JJ and I were both giggling until the last page. A lovely tale of kindness wrapped in a silly outer shell, and we loved it. Baby Bookworm approved!

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