The Terrible Two

Hip, hip, hooray! I've been looking forward to celebrating The Terrible Two with Colby Sharp for over three months.  

I've been informed by Mac Barnett, Jory John, and Kevin Cornell that you cannot continue reading this post or visit Colby's blog until after you have taken "The Prankster's Oath." Press play. 

The Terrible Two by Mac Barnett and Jory John; illustrated by Kevin Cornell | Amulet Books | Interest level: Grades 3-6. 

I wrote the words in red, and Mr. Kevin Cornell wrote the words in black. Thanks, Kevin! 

When I received the manuscript for The Terrible Two I was in the garden, tending to my azaleas. My man Nicholsby handed me an envelope, my name exquisitely scrawled across the front in rapidly fading ink. I’m quite suspicious of parcels from the Pacific Coast these days, what with the time delay and all. (I understand making contact with the future can be quite perilous, especially if one accidentally changes the flow of time.) Throwing caution to the wind, I opened the envelope, and was pleasantly surprised to find a story most hilarious about a friendship quite unusual. “Nicholsby,” I said, “I must capture this tale! Fetch my easel and sketching tortillons!”
Image Credit: Amulet Books
I think Mac Barnett and John Jory must have the most devilish fun working together. I imagine much of this book is a practical joke in itself, where we ourselves are the so-called “goats”. Two fast friends, making a living wage by passing a tale betwixt one another? We are being bamboozled, friends! Why, I’d wager a month of Nicholsby’s earnings that neither of them have winnowed a stalk of wheat in their life!

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Did you know that cows are woefully unprofessional as models? Why, I must have interviewed a dozen or more cows before concluding that they don’t give a feathered farthing about bringing emotion to a pose, much less conveying the subtle contraposto I wish my etchings to capture. In the end, most of the cow drawings were just Nicholsby posed in my mother’s calf-skin frock coat. Dreadful.

If you visited my studio you would be most enchanted, I’m sure. I’ve assembled quite the assortment of hunting trophies to inspire me and keep my faculties sharp. Of course, Cecilia chides me constantly about my workspace. “How can you dream in such a dreadful place?” she’ll say. She’s never appreciated my trophies, what with her delicate sensibilities. Why, when I brought home my majestic silver-backed gorilla, she nearly split her corset. In front of the staff, no less!  

School libraries are exceedingly important! A most wonderful resource when one must perform their studies, or wishes to read or draw at their own leisure. Or so I’m told. I, of course, have my own library, which has always been superbly quiet. Especially since Cecilia left for her sister’s, in the country.

Reading is quite a useful skill. I would say I use it with relatively frequency. I have in fact been using it just now, and it has been a great aid in answering these questions. And once one has the trick of it, one may find it impossible to not read. In the evening, when I sit down to watch those televised programs of which I indulge, I often find myself still reading many of the words that appear on screen, or in advertising bulletins. Actually, I would say the only time I don’t use reading, might be when I am sleeping. Unless of course, I dream of reading the newspaper. Good heavens! I should be wearing spectacles while I sleep! The unforeseen eye-strain!

Mr. Schu, you should have asked me about my latest and perhaps most important project. For some time now, I have been tinkering with a device to replace the horse carriage as a mode of travel. Think of it! Entire streets filled with honking and churning Cornell-o-Trons, occupants waving merrily to one another as they motor bravely to their picnics and luncheons!

Please visit Colby Sharp's blog to see what he and Mac Barnett chatted about. 

Borrow The Terrible Two from your school or public library. Whenever possible, please support independent bookshops. 


  1. What a fun interview, Mr. Schu! This book series is sure to be a winner.

  2. This was absolutely hilarious, Mr. Schu! And I can tell you, Kevin Cornell has just gained a new admirer :D I can't wait to get my hands on this book/series! Mission accomplished, Kevin! lol


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