by Mac Barnett, Jon Klassen (Illustrator)

With perfect pacing, the multi-award-winning, New York Times best-selling team of Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen dig down for a deadpan tale full of visual humor.

Sam and Dave are on a mission. A mission to find something spectacular. So they dig a hole. And they keep digging. And they find . . . nothing. Yet the day turns out to be pretty spectacular after all. Attentive readers will be rewarded with a rare treasure in this witty story of looking for the extraordinary — and finding it in a manner you’d never expect.

Sam and Dave Dig a Hole

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  • Publishers Weekly ★ 08/11/2014 Barnett’s comic voice is at its driest as he recounts that quintessential American childhood activity—the digging of the giant hole. His deadpan prose mimics the declarative sentences of early readers: “On Monday Sam and Dave dug a hole. ‘When should we stop digging?’ asked Sam. ‘We are on a mission,’ said Dave.” Klassen’s boys, with identical poker faces and glassy expressions, hold their shovels American Gothic–style, considering their next move. Cross-sections of earth show them further and further down, and comic tension erupts as readers see gigantic diamonds buried at intervals underground while Sam and Dave tunnel on, missing every one: “So Dave went one way, and Sam went another. But they didn’t find anything spectacular.” Meanwhile, their dog’s pursuit of a small bone leads further downward, possibly through the Earth and out the “other side.” They land in their own backyard again—or do they? Barnett and Klassen (Extra Yarn) dangle the prospect of fantastic subterranean treasure before readers, but leave them with an even greater reward: a tantalizingly creepy and open-ended conclusion. Ages 4–8. Agent: Steven Malk, Writers House. (Oct.) ISBN-13: 9780763662295 Publisher: Candlewick Press Publication date: 10/14/2014 Pages: 40 Age range: 4 - 8 Years - Imagination & Play - Juvenile Fiction | Humorous Stories - Holes -Shovels - Persistence Awards: Caldecott Medal | Honor Book | Picture Book | 2015 - 2015 ; Georgia Children's Book Award | Finalist | Picture Storybook | 2016 - 2016 ; Kentucky Bluegrass Award | Recommended | Preschool | 2016 - 2016 ; E.B. White Read Aloud Award | Winner | Picture Book | 2015 - 2015 ; Colorado Children's Book Award | Nominee | Picture Book | 2016 - 2016 ; Irma S. & James H. Black Award | Winner | Children's Literature | 2014 - 2014 ; Capitol Choices: Noteworthy Books for Children and Teens | Recomm