Jimmy Zangwow’s Out-of-This-World Moon-Pie Adventure is the first book by Tony DiTerlizzi, the author of the now-famous Spiderwick Chronicles. This book explores just how far a boy will go to get his favorite snack, a Moon Pie. From page one, it grabs readers and pulls them into the 1950s, when life was simpler. The illustrations are done in warm tones of brown and muted colors that evoke a certain nostalgia for slower times. It harkens back to a time when kids entertained themselves by creating toys from things they found. In those days, children’s imaginations blossomed from things around them and nature. Today, life for children can be vastly different. Books like this one can remind us how vastly different times are today for children.
Jimmy Zangwow is a boy whose name fits him. He is a feisty redhead in red cowboy boots with aviator goggles and scarf, suspenders and shorts. When his mother, busy cooking a nasty-looking dinner at the stove, refuses to grant him his request for a pre-dinner Moon Pie, he is forced to resort to extreme measures. He boards his space craft that he has made out of junk and belts out, “I wish I could go to the moon and get my own Moon
Pies.” To his surprise and delight, the old jalopy takes off. Jimmy’s adventures take him far into the Milky Way. He encounters Mr. Moon, a loveable but hard-of-hearing old gent, who gives him 1,000 moon pies. On his journey, he realizes that everyone loves Moon Pies as much as he does. So he gives away all his Moon Pies to the friends he makes. In return, the friends help him get back to earth in time for dinner.
Jimmy Zangwow’s Out-of-This-World Moon-Pie Adventure is one of the best picture books for children who love to invent and imagine. This book really puts the “imagine” back into imagination, where children can dream their wildest dreams. The importance of sharing his moon pies will also not be lost on those who read this book.