Herb notices his friend Muriel growing, but he doesn't seem to be getting any taller. He tries all sorts of things to help speed up a growth spurt. He plants himself in the ground and has Muriel water him. Then he asks Muriel to roll him out like a piece of clay. No good. All day long he works on ideas to help himself grow, but nothing helps and he goes to bed sad. As usual, growth happens in its own time and Muriel is a good friend who helps to notice and celebrate the change when it comes.
Anyone who is feeling left behind because siblings or classmates are growing more quickly will sympathize with Herb. As he tries to force himself to grow and only winds up dizzy, queasy, and muddy, readers can laugh and perhaps gain some perspective on their own troubles. Muriel is a helpful pal who rolls "him backward and forward until her arms ached" in an effort to help him stretch and then makes him his favorite treat when his plans don't work.
A story the combines the frustrations of growing with the joys of having an understanding friend. A fun read-aloud for elementary school or younger.
I received a review copy from the publisher.