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A Fuse #8 Production
Inside A Fuse #8 Production

Fuse 8 n’ Kate: I’ll Fix Anthony by Judith Viorst, ill. Arnold Lobel

Could you publish a book today where a sibling relationship is anything other than sunshine and roses by the story’s conclusion? I say no, and I say the elaborate revenge fantasy of this week’s podcast topic, I’ll Fix Anthony, is a healthy catharsis for some children. Kate, needless to say, disagrees. I won’t go into it, but she had a rough week. Knowing this, I made the inelegant move to present her with this out-of-print now-back-in-print title. Judith Viorst (best known for Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day) and Arnold Lobel (best known for Frog and Toad) got together and created this truly original, one-of-a-kind book. But does that mean it’s any good? Our skilled critics take a deep dive into its legacy today (and come up with some pretty different reactions).

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

Show Notes:

For the record, Kate is 100% wrong about the scent of this candle for Dan Yaccarino’s The Longest Storm. It smells LOVELY!

Here’s the candle:

Here’s the book:

The other swag was a Sage Marshmallow lollipop. I only have the description in this picture because, mysteriously, the lollipop disappeared upon entering my home:

My vote: Not enough sage.

Any ideas what this font is? Cause Kate is NOT a fan.

This one threw both of us for a loop. We were under the distinct impression that copyright laws are strong. So how is it that this book is able to not only namecheck Snoopy but do a pretty good late-60s Snoopy drawing as well? How is this legal?

Kate calls this the anti-vaxxers section of the book. In it, you see “Anthony” go through a series of illnesses. Any guess which one it culminates in?

Our theory is that this is Beavis’s mom, when she was young enough to be in this book. A comparison:

Kate calls this the “Tim Burton bedroom”. I think it’s more Edward Gorey. However you look at it, it’s great.

UPDATE: A friend of mine recently asked if the “Indian headdress” was removed from the edition I saw. And yes . . . yes it definitely was. Observe:

Kate Recommends: Up to Speed on Hulu.

Betsy Recommends: Quinta Brunson in the skit If I Won 2nd Place at the Winter Olympics.

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. The first rubella vaccine was only licensed in 1969, and the MMR was released in 1971. Mumps vaccines weren’t commonly administered to children before then. So no, not anti-vaxxers, just life in 1969.