Who could possibly forget a title like The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales? John Scieszka brings old fairy tales back to life, only with an air of complete wackiness that makes every reader do a double take. Lane Smith is back again, collaborating with Scieszka to bring the weird and zany right into kids’ minds. The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales is a collective of very, very fractured fairy tales. Each story is brief, to the point, and bizarre.
The Ugly Duckling doesn’t grow up to be beautiful – just a Really Ugly Duck. Little Red Running Shorts beats the wolf at his own game. In fact, no part of this book is safe. While other children’s books have plot and structure, The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales essentially has none. The table of contents falls on Chicken Licken. Jack, the narrator, scoffs at the title page, contents, and just about every part of the book. Other stories contain morals or lessons to be learned, but you’ll not find any here. Instead, Scieszka brings in sheer madness put forth only to entertain with stories and styles that will have kids staring at the pages and laughing all the way off the mattress.
Readers were warned though. The title is really all you need to know in order to understand what this book is about. When looking for a book that is outside of the box, this one is about as far outside the box as one can get.