A Million Fish… is a fish story with a Louisiana lilt and vivacious, vibrantly colored pictures to match. Hugh Thomas, an African-American boy, is fishing in the bayou when two old men row out of the fog. The two elders tantalize Hugh with outrageous tall tales about mysterious goings-on in the swamp. Hugh isn’t sure whether to believe them — but after the men row away, amazing things begin to happen. Hugh catches a million fish, and, to protect his catch, has to match wits with hungry alligators and greedy pirate raccoons. Did all this really happen — or has Hugh Thomas taken to telling whoppers of his own?
Dena Schutzer’s paintings swirl with movement and high-spirited fun, and Patricia McKissacks’ narrative is expansive, evocative, and tangy with Southern-flavored dialect. In all, a fine read-aloud for a hot summer day.