I have been enjoying the books of Daniel Pinkwater for probably 35 years. I still remember my favorite book of his fondly: Alan Mendelsohn, the Boy from Mars. It was a book about an unpopular outcast and I felt very seen. I loved the fact that he got to find a friend and have adventures and smoke cigars and travel to another plane of reality. I enjoyed all of his books that I read, including Young Adult Novel and The Snarkout Boys and the Avocado of Death. Didn’t he have fantastic titles? And I’ll never forget listening to Car Talk with my dad and realizing that it was Daniel Pinkwater calling in. If memory serves, they decided to use a new method of measuring car seat size for ample rumps “the “Pinkwater”. Recently, I’ve been finding some of his books geared for younger kids for my own children. My eldest really enjoyed the Hoboken Chicken Emergency.
So I was very excited to get an eARC of Adventures of a Dwergish Girl from NetGalley. It envisions a community of Dwergs, people resembling fairy tale dwarves, living in update New York. But, like many a Pinkwater book, it doesn’t dawdle. It quickly sets our protagonist, a Dwerg who goes by Molly, off on a series of wacky adventures, which include the most loving description of a papaya-based New York hot dog eatery you have ever or will ever read. It really made me nostalgic for when I lived on the Upper East Side.
Like many Pinkwater books, this one is filled with zany characters that seem so unrealistic that you know they must be based on real people. Also, like many Pinkwater books, the plot zigs and zags with many unexpected turns that could easily give you whiplash, they are so abrupt.
Is this book perfect? No. But it captures that classic Pinkwater vibe. And that’s good enough for me!