A new book by Daniel Pinkwater; it's online with myriad fun illustrations (click on the subject line, above); and the blurb on the back of the IRL book is by Neil Gaiman! Who could ask for anything more? Pinky says it's his best book to date, and while I am still partial to Hoboken Nights, if we're talking fiction, he may just be right.
The Neddiad, or How Neddie Took the Train, Went to Hollywood, and Saved Civilization is the saga of young shoelace heir Neddie Wentworthstein. Filled with bad guys, trains, turtles, and those wonderful Pinkwater names (Col. Ken Krenwinkle, for example), every page is a delight. Just reading the chapter titles is fun - my favorites so far are "Box of Weasels" and "My Yiddishe Shaman."
I found the book in the library and devoured it. What I really want, though, is to buy it as an audiobook read by the author. This is the best way to savor Pinkwater, I believe: to hear him read his own words. Our family has listened to so many of his books on tape that I can now pick up a new Pinkwater book and practically hear him read it to me - but it's much better to hear the real article.
Three cheers for Neddie! And thrice that for Daniel Manus Pinkwater, who never ceases to surprise and amaze me.