I didn't know much about McElligot's Pool
when we checked it out this morning. I didn't read it as a child. My first impression was that the artwork is different than other Seuss books. It alternates between black-and-white and beautiful multicolored drawings. Apparently, he used color pencils for this one instead of his more typical pen-and-ink. The result for me is that the drawings in McElligot's Pool
are among my favorite of any of Seuss' works I've read to-date.
I really liked the main character Marco. He refuses to let the humble, polluted appearance of the tiny pool deter him from fishing there. Marco's mind takes him past the visible limits of the pool, imagining all types of real and not-even-close-to-real fish that he might catch in the pathetic little puddle. Marco represents optimism and hope, while the farmer who calls the boy a fool for wasting his time fishing at McElligot's Pool is a realist. The farmer's mind can't get past appearances. The worlds of endless possibility and limitation collide once again, with possibility once again trumping impossibility in Seuss' universe.
I needn't have been concerned that Sigourney would rebel at the length of the book. She was fascinated by the increasingly strange fish imagined by Marco. She particularly loved the massive Thing-a-ma-jigger that made a whale look like a minnow. Her face stayed about two inches from the page throughout the read. I suspect she'd give 5 stars without a blink.