- Brobarians by Lindsay Ward
ISBN 978-1-5039-4167-0 $17.99
Reviewed from galleys R 4-6 yrs
This picture book starts off like any good high fantasy—a detailed map of a fictional world and a legend of warriors and battles. Here, though, the map is a scribbled, colored mess and the warriors are two brothers whose once peaceful alliance has been broken by a cookie jar mishap. Iggy (strong as ten men, master of the sword, etc.) seizes big brother Otto’s army (little plastic dudes), and Otto, after consulting with his advisers (pet dog and stuffed animal), counterattacks by stealing Iggy’s most cherished possession (his bottle). Will the realm ever be united again with order restored? The two “brobarians” share plenty of bluster and swagger with Morales’ Niño (from Niño Wrestles the World, BCCB 9/13), and the text is similarly over the top, reveling in its amusingly dramatic tone. The sometimes flat palette of greens and blues in the digital art is enlivened by pattern and texture, while beams of yellow and orange invigorate the climactic scene in which the war-painted brothers, one mounted atop a unicorn and the other on a sabertooth tiger, go to battle. For siblings (and friends) who see their disagreements as epic battles, this might just be the thing to bring about peace through a few good chuckles.