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Book Review: Do Witches Make Fishes? by Jason Mayo

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Do Witches Make Fishes? That is the central question to this charming children’s book by Jason Mayo, which takes a creative look at a situation that parents are all too familiar with.

The story begins with a young boy at the dinner table. His mother has cooked him a wonderful, healthy meal, but he refuses to eat any part of it. The boy (who remains unnamed throughout the story) would rather munch on the food of choice for most kids: candy. When his mother refuses to let him have any of his favorite sweet treats, he wishes her away so he can have all the candy he wants. However, his wish comes with a hefty price when a witch shows up and tries to force him to eat everything she places in front of him. if not, she will “whip up a spell that will fix you quite well.”

The plot is actually told in a very simple style, sing-song rhyming verse to bring the words to life. Usually I appreciate this kind of technique, especially when I am reading to younger children between 3-6, and while some parts are very well done, when I read it out loud, some of the verses did not fit the pattern that was set forth throughout the book. I read it out loud again just to make sure, and it still felt the same way. This might be a little worrisome to some adults; however, I doubt that most children will mind and will be rooting for the boy to get rid of the witch and get his mother back.

The illustrations are nicely done, drawn in a nice, easy style that will allow young children to see exactly what is going on. I also liked that the witch was not meant to be seen as a scary witch, which to me means the author and illustrator really kept the audience in mind when creating the book.

Overall, Do Witches Make Fishes is a cute, finely drawn tale that teaches children a very valuable lesson about eating healthy, which is something I really think all parents can appreciate. 

Do Witches Make Fishes is now available for purchase. All profits from the sale of this book will be donated to The Garden of Dreams foundation, a non-profit organization that works with all areas of Madison Square Garden “to make dreams come true for kids in crisis.”

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