Laughter is precious but what if there was a machine that would make everyone laugh – how precious would it be? Very, as little Jeffrey and Ben discovered. Working in a junk shop they found a machine that produced rip roaring jokes that sent everyone, including their temperamental neighbour, into splits. And theirs is a story that will bring a smile on the faces of our young readers as well.
In The Joke Machine, McCall Smith does not preach. Nor does he get naughty and suggest pranks or deride elders. No, just by using his imagination he creates a book that will enthrall children with its imaginative plot, simple writing style and whacky illustrations. At the same time, Smith manages to convey some important messages. Messages about laughter, joy, and friendship. Messages about curiosity, about not giving up, about letting the children tinker about with machine parts. Messages which are delivered so simply that one does not even notice them. And at the end of the book, the reader gets up wishing that he or she too had a joke machine that would enable to him to laugh away life’s troubles and to fill the lives of those around him with joy.
A must read for children in the 5-10 age group.
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