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A Fuse #8 Production
Inside A Fuse #8 Production

Fuse 8 n’ Kate: No, David! by David Shannon

Kate set me up with a challenge. We’ve been deeming too many books as “classics”. What book could I produce that would engender more of a debate? Well, after all these episodes (82!) I think I’ve figured out Kate’s least loved genre. It involves childlike art. It involves kids who aren’t entirely saintly. Really, it was just a matter of time before we got to this one. We’ve not done a David Shannon book before (though I dream of someday doing Duck on a Bike, though it’s a bit too obscure). Ultimately we determine that the fault at work here is not that of David, but the inattentive parents.

Listen to the whole show here on Soundcloud or download it through iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play, PlayerFM, or your preferred method of podcast selection.

Show Notes:

Who wore it better? Frederick’s endpapers or David’s back cover?

What parent of a kid like this has a carpet that white? “That kid has worms coming off of him!”

Kate pointed out that the water in the bath was green. She somehow missed the floating mine behind him.

Happily, she has provided the “Partysaurus Rex” video. It is a delight.

Of all the things to notice, Kate was unnerved by the fact that David has round toes on one foot and triangular toes on the other.


“I’m sure he’s being annoying, but come on. He’s got on a Sgt. Pepper jacket, and that’s so cool.”

So Kate doesn’t like one thing in picture books. And I was just so so very good about not putting any clowns in any of her picture books. But this time? I missed this guy. “That’s a big ole clown.”

And the Etch a Sketch is from 1960, if that helps date the kid in the book.

Yes, Betsy. It was Hiawatha and the Peacemaker.

About Elizabeth Bird

Elizabeth Bird is currently the Collection Development Manager of the Evanston Public Library system and a former Materials Specialist for New York Public Library. She has served on Newbery, written for Horn Book, and has done other lovely little things that she'd love to tell you about but that she's sure you'd find more interesting to hear of in person. Her opinions are her own and do not reflect those of EPL, SLJ, or any of the other acronyms you might be able to name. Follow her on Twitter: @fuseeight.


  1. Barbara Wright says:

    The Tale of John Barleycorn: or from barley to beer by Mary Azarian is a picture book in my school library that I weeded and saved for myself, and its about making beer!

  2. My sister was an inveterate drawer. My parents were constantly putting paper in front of her, but she drew everywhere, from the walls to my piano exercise books to the ironing board. In fact, once she drew on the wall with red permanent marker, that then took multiple layers of paint to finally stop bleeding through.

    I once let me son and his friend dig a big hole I the garden with the proviso that they hose themselves off before coming back in. First, their definition of clean was not my definition, but secondly, they lost my son’s shirt in the hole and they had to go back out and muck around to find it. I actually wasn’t that mad, though, since they had made the effort.

  3. Dropping by as the mother of a young artist with ADHD to second the above comment and answer the question in the show that YES the drawing on the wall thing does happen– or did, she’s ten now and has learned to contain her self-expression to tablets (both electronic and paper)– but oh my gosh, she was a COMPULSIVE artist/scribbler/leave-her-mark-er. ANY AVAILABLE SURFACE, including herself or other people (my husband once informed me that I had to go change my pants right before I left for work because SOMEONE had apparently “written on [my] butt.”). Just like KathyS’s sister, she could NOT be contained, even when we tried to satisfy her creative urges. Likewise when we tried to keep art supplies out of her reach– SHE WOULD FIND SOME AND SHE WOULD USE THEM. This lasted a lot later into her childhood than you might expect–she couldn’t HELP herself– she was then given the task/punishment of cleaning up her artwork afterward but it still took her a long time to break the habit. You ask where were the parents, why weren’t they stopping David? They were probably doing their best, but ones best still cannot keep a child with ADHD out of trouble, and I have two of them.

  4. Sarah Schreffler says:

    I’m not sure that is a mine. It looks like a rubber ball we have with spikes.