A few weeks ago, I posted on the importance of the question “What if?” to Science Fiction, but really, that’s a question that pertains to all of Slipstream Fiction.
What is Slipstream? It’s a bit of an umbrella term that covers Sci-Fi, Fantasy, and everything in-between. If it isn’t quite possible in our world, it can be considered Slipstream.
As I think about the books that fit into that genre, I realize that probably half or more children’s books are built on a slipstream premise. What if animals could talk? What if toys came to life when you weren’t looking? What if there was a tree that everything got stuck in?
It’s that last premise that is the subject of my new favorite children’s book, Stuck by Oliver Jeffers (I’ve reviewed another book by Jeffers over here).
It doesn’t start as a slipstream book.
“It all began when Floyd’s kite became stuck in a tree.”
But when, instead of using a ladder to retrieve the kite, Floyd tosses the ladder up and gets it stuck too, I started to think that this book offered more than initially met the eye.
I don’t want to give away any of the bits that make this book my new favorite, so I’ll just say that you need to pick it up for yourself. Oliver Jeffers is a gifted illustrator, story writer, and master of the absurd. It was published by Philomel Books, a division of Penguin Young Readers Group, back in 2011.