“Knucklehead” is Scieszka’s own tall tale, a memoir organized like a collection of snapshots about growing up with five brothers in the Flint, Mich., of the 1950’s. Ever the teacher, in this slim volume Scieszka writes a model memoir. Or as he puts it, when you are getting in trouble “it’s good to be the one telling the story.”Scieszka gets children, and he gets their humor. Especially boy humor. He tells the truth about what really goes on when parents aren’t looking. (Chapter 34, “Fire”: “There is something about boys and fire that is like fish and water, birds and air, cats and hairballs. They just go together.” Good thing Scieszka’s mom was a nurse.
Of course, you expect good things from the country’s first national ambassador for young people’s literature, "a kind of children’s book version of the Library of Congress’s poet laureate program."