Midwood resident Artie Bennett really gets to the bottom of things.
As the author of the new children’s book, “The Butt Book.” Bennett has created a clever and unique work that’s sure to delight both kids and adults.
“You may be wondering whatever possessed me to write this book? I was familiar with Dr. Seuss’s anatomical series. You may know the Bright and Early Books. There’s ‘The Foot Book,’ ‘The Ear Book,’ ‘The Eye Book,’ and ‘The Tooth Book.’ They’re delightful,” Bennett told this paper.
“And then I had a brainstorm: a butt book would make a great addition to this hallowed series,” Bennett continued. “Because Dr. Seuss, sadly, passed away in 1991, he’s no longer around to flesh out the series by writing about butts. Somebody had to. I guess it was cheeky of me, but I decided to do it.”
Only a Brooklynite would have the chutzpah to write a tome about rear ends, which includes the silly line, “Butts have cheeks just like our faces though they’re found in different places.”
Bennett, who is also the executive copy editor for Random House Children’s Book, got his spunk growing up in East New York. In fact, he may eventually pen a book about or set in Brooklyn. As a native Brooklynite, he sure has enough stories.
“My public school was where I used to play punchball as a kid. I remember it being what I thought at the time was a herculean blast to punch the ball over the fence. It was very rare for any little kid to do that,” he recalled. “I remember returning to that public school some years later when I was in college in Georgia. I had a ball with me and I punched it and I was able to clear the fence by what seemed many, many lengths. That was an interesting memory — how your perspective on things as a child is really so different from your perspective when you are grown up.”
As an adult, Bennett finds inspiration from Brooklyn’s beautiful green spaces (Prospect Park and the Brooklyn Botanic Garden are favorites).
He’s also a member of the Brooklyn Bird Club and has seen phalaropes, waterthrushes, and dickcissels right here in the borough.
“We have a very active Brooklyn Bird Club and they go all over Brooklyn from Dyker Heights to Dreier-Offerman Park,” he said. “Why don’t I write a book about that after I write the Brooklyn book?”
So what will be Bennett’s immediate follow-up to “The Butt Book?”
“It would be a poop-related children’s book. That would be the perfect sequel,” the author revealed.
Buy “The Butt Book,” illustrated by Mike Lester and published by Bloomsbury, at all major book stores and www.amazon.com where it’s currently on sale for $11.55. Read an excerpt from the book at www.artiebennett.com.