When a tornado leaves a farmer with a heap of scrap metal and no animals, his neighbors are sure it's all over for him. But the determined farmer refuses to admit defeat. His plans are big, and when his neighbors dismiss them with the words, "When pigs fly," they grow bigger still. The farmer sets to work to turn that scrap metal into some rather surprising creatures. Mechanimals will help all of us believe in our dreams, despite what the neighbors may say.
"The story is quite clever and youngsters will be drawn in by the simple text and folksy humor. The illustrations are the star of the show though; each page features a monochromatic background with the action or character in question in full color. This makes the action standout and helps the reader focus the eye on the action going on in the text...A simple story comes very much alive with these wonderful illustrations."
– Southwest Ohio and Neighboring Libraries
"A refreshingly original and quirky idea for a children's picture book."
– BC Bookworld
"An unusual and likeable picture book."
– Quill & Quire
"The illustrations...are delightful. Recommended."
– CM Magazine
"Dreamers and inventors alike will enjoy the crazy illustrations and nutty premise of this exuberant picture book."
– Island Parent
"Will appeal to budding inventors and those who have big dreams."
– Canadian Children's Book News
"Young and old readers with an interest in vehicles or gadgets might find appeal in this book."
– Resource Links
"Written and charmingly illustrated by Chris Tougas, this large work for young readers boasts...many inventive drawings."
"The illustrations in this story are wonderful and enhance the text, making the story a delight to read."
– Library Media Connection
"This salute to ingenuity features...amusing industrial-hued illustrations with pops of color honor the farmer's imaginative vision."
– The Horn Book Guide
"Tougas gives us an ingenious farmer and a visually fascinating, funny book."
– The Globe and Mail
"Tougas' bright illustrations will draw young readers in."
– NJ Youth Services
Alcuin Design Award | 2008 | Winner
Bolen Books Children's Book Prize | 2008 | Winner
CCBC Best Books | 2008 | Commended
Chocolate Lily | 2009 | Winner
CLA Amelia Frances Howard-Gibbon Illustrator's Award Honorable Mention | 2008 | Short-listed
Golden Duck nominee | 2007 | Commended
Resource Links "The Year's Best" | 2007 | Commended
SYRCA Shining Willow Award | 2009 | Winner