The Museum of Lost Teeth
“The addition of The Museum of Lost Teeth to any child’s collection is a no-brainer. It’s sweet. It’s funny. Adults will be happy to read it over and over. It’s the best kind of picture book you can own.”
Oh, to be five again and tumble through the emotions of losing your first tooth—excitement about this rite of passage, anxiety because what if it hurts, envy of the friends who have already lost a tooth, hope that the tooth fairy will find and reward the moment. And that’s just the kid side of the affair. Who knew that those lost teeth have their own anxieties about the event? Author Elyssa Friedman captures the tooth end of the story in this delightfully silly picture book.
The story follows Toothy, whose official address is “Bottom Row, Left Center, Liam Taylor’s Mouth, New Jersey.” Got that? No doubt Felicity Fairy, the Tooth Fairy who covers the Tri-State area, knows exactly where that is, as well as where Toothy’s best friend, Fang, lives, which happens to be next door.
All is good for Toothy until the inevitable happens and a crunchy apple plucks Toothy out of Liam’s mouth. And now, Toothy is worried! What will happen next? What will Toothy do without Liam and Fang? But soon Felicity Fairy whisks Toothy away to the incredible Museum of Lost Teeth, which is loaded with—what else?—lost teeth. “The building was grand and magnificent. Toothy had been to museums before with Liam. He hoped this one had a gift shop. And dinosaurs!” Alas, no gift shop or dinosaurs are mentioned, but Toothy is thrilled to discover an entire museum of new friends, as well as teeth activities like Tooth or Dare and Musical Crowns.
As an added bonus, the story should inspire readers to brush their teeth and do the Floss. And if they’re not convinced in the early pages, by the time Toothy arrives in Cavity Corner, they’ll have a little more reason to diligently take care of their teeth.
The Museum of Lost Teeth is the best kind of picture book. Kids, especially those on the cusp of losing that first tooth, will love the silly, yet encouraging, story. Adults will get their own laughs with Friedland’s endless puns. They’ll also appreciate the samples of tooth fairy letters that, if needed someday, could inspire their own letters. There’s plenty of adult humor to still enjoy reading it even the tenth night in a row. How often does that happen with a picture book?
Gladys Jose’s simple but lively illustrations bring the story to life. She’s done a fine job of making teeth look friendly and, well, even adorable.
The addition of The Museum of Lost Teeth to any child’s collection is a no-brainer. It’s sweet. It’s funny. Adults will be happy to read it over and over. It’s the best kind of picture book you can own.