When Benny’s mother asks him to put his dirty plate in the sink, he responds by asking: “What would you do if I said no?” Her answer is predictable, but not enough for Benny, whose “what if?” line of questioning continues as he dreams up increasingly naughty behavior: What if he threw his plate at the wall? What if he jumped on the couch in muddy rain boots? What if he tore pages out of library books? Playing on their shared sense of humor and imagination, and showing more than a little bit of indulgence, his mother’s answers become equally outrageous. She sends Benny off to the zoo, sells him to the circus, and even happily shoots him off into outer space as punishment for his behavior.The story’s circular ending brings it all back home with a clever — and entirely reasonable — punchline.
I never planned on becoming writer. As a kid, my favorite subjects in school were science and math — I dreamed of becoming a doctor or a pilot. At university I got degrees in science and business; afterwards, I had jobs in the aerospace, biopharmaceutical and financial services industries. I even taught business at college! I finally started writing when I was twenty-eight. My books have won awards and been translated into a dozen languages. My novels include The Gypsy King trilogy and Ortega, and my picture books include the critically acclaimed Buddy and Earl series, InvisiBill, The Day Santa Stopped Believing in Harold and The Reptile Club.View Author