The DFF Book Club

I’m about to take up a new challenge upon in this honourable pursuit of motherhood, certain that millions of mothers around the world have already blazed the trail for me — the next step in practical, home-making, home-educating, nerdy-is-necessary skilling up. I’ve bought two rolls of clear contact paper and will begin covering some of my more fragile paperbacks in the hope that they will endure my children’s less-than-gentle handling. If other mothers have done this for decades, surely it’ll work, right?

One of the first books to receive this VIP treatment is a gem that I’m afraid I could never replace. Published in the late 70s, Who’s got the apple? by Swedish writer/illustrator Jan Lööf is a great storybook, an easy early-reader and a funny picture book that can promote a depth of discussion similar to those hilarious talks that happen while browsing though one of Richard Scarry’s masterpieces.

Who's got the apple by Jan Lööf

This is a deceptively simple book. It starts with an April Fool’s Day joke and ends up with the tables being turned and the joke ending up on the original joker. (Did someone also play a joke on you for the first of this month?)

Who's got the apple by Jan Lööf
Since it was April Fool's Day, the storekeeper decided to play a joke. He gave the man a plastic green apple, telling him to let it ripen.

Who's got the apple by Jan Lööf
Then the storekeeper went outside to see how his giant red apple was doing. He was sure it would win first prize at the country fair.

Who's got the apple by Jan Lööf
The man in the striped suit decides his green apple will ripen if he places it on his window sill, but it gets knocked outside and sets off a chain of events that lead us through the town to the school and back to the storekeeper's yard.

While these events are taking place, the police are chasing a thief, a car accident wrecks the storekeeper’s fence, and a kitten runs up a tree and needs to be rescued by the friendly firemen.

Who's got the apple by Jan Lööf
After many adventures, the storekeeper's prize apple gets placed onto the window sill, where the man in the striped suit exclaims, "It ripened much faster than I thought it would."

The man in the striped suit returns to the storekeeper to compliment him on his delicious apple: “This is the juiciest apple I’ve ever tasted!”.

Who's got the apple by Jan Lööf
The man in the striped suit went on his way, while the storekeeper sat under his apple tree and thought and though. He just couldn't figure out what had happened. But wouldn't you be surprised if he could?

My quick summary does not do this book justice. There are several little sub-plots in the illustrations, so you’ll find yourself flipping back through the pages to see what’s happening.

Who’s got the apple? is out of print, but you don’t need to be disappointed. Here’s a list of sellers who ship to Australia, or if you’re State-side, Amazon has this one for less than $2.