Theodore Roosevelt
Letters From a
Young Coal Miner.

Water Rat
"A good choice for readers who love plenty of action, a solid story." -School Library Journal, January 1999

Back to Main

The Runaway Tortilla
Written by Eric A. Kimmel
Illustrated by Randy Cecil

The Horn Book Guide, 10/15/2001
"In this southewestern verion of the Gingerbread Man, a tortilla escapes the griddle and runs away, chased by an old couple, horned toads, donkeys, rattlesnakes, and buckaroos. A cagey coyote finally tricks the tortilla into being eaten. Playful illustrations in a brown-gold palette set this one in the Texas desert."

Kirkus Reviews, 9/1/2000
"The author of a conventional Gingerbread Man dishes up another version, this with a Southwestern flavor and a female entrée. Tía Lupe makes such light tortillas at El Papagayo Feliz, her south Texas taqueria, that one finally jumps up, declares, ‘I'm too beautiful to eat,' and rolls out the door. Weaving her way past horned toads, rattlesnakes, cowboys, and other pursuers, the tortilla sings out a catchy, taunting refrain, printed in long, wavy lines across each spread: ‘Run as fast as fast can be. You won't get a bite of me. Doesn't matter what you do. I'll be far ahead of you!' Like a small, gleeful moon, the tortilla rolls across Cecil's dusty, mustard-yellow chaparral, chased by a growing crowd of hungry-looking admirers, meeting her inevitable end when sly Coyote begs her prettily to remove the ‘grasshopper' that has lodged in his throat. Deeper and deeper into his throat she travels until all that shows are his teeth wrapped around the edge of the pages and the tortilla staring down his gullet. And ‘SNAP!' How sad. How delicious!"

School Library Journal, 10/1/2000
"Tía Lupe and Tío José own a taqueria in Texas down on the Rio Grande. The secret to their success is their tortillas—so light that if they were any lighter, ‘Some day they might up and run away!' To their surprise, this is just what happens. The foolish tortilla is so cocky she could almost strut, but since she's round, she can only roll. She rolls away from the couple, two horned toads, three donkeys, four jackrabbits, five rattlesnakes, and six buckaroos, singing all the while, ‘Run as fast as fast can be. You won't get a bite of me.' She is finally tricked and eaten by Señor Coyote, who takes advantage of her fatuous egotism. The primitive oil paintings feature a palette of sunset colors, a rotund Tía and Tío, and a lipsticked, scowling tortilla. The apt endpapers sport sacks of flour, rolling pins, salt shakers, oil, and skillets."