Inspiring Young Readers

posted on 13 May 2024

The Birth of Agent Big Butt by Amy Winfield, illustrated by Tom McWeeney

It would seem that children the world over respond well to the daring use of language about bottoms, underpants and farts which sometimes meets with disapproval from adults who have long forgotten the appeal. This, the first one of a popular series by Texan author, Amy Winfield, certainly doesn’t disappoint.

I read it aloud with my five and seven year old grandsons who were thrilled with the book title and giggled a great deal when we read the intriguing blurb on the back which promised ‘an array of explosive farts that can defeat any adversary.’

We spent some time looking at the splendid front cover illustration which hinted at plenty of adventurous and rude content within. We also speculated about the scary looking face shown at the top - was it the evil Doctor as described in the blurb or ‘just someone who wanted to take over the world?’ We liked the subheading ‘Butt of Steel, Heart of Gold’ which clearly signalled that the Baby must be some kind of Superhero.

The story is confidently narrated by Agent Big Butt and begins with his vivid memories about the day he was born. We hear that he was very comfortable in the womb but it was feeling very cramped so when the time came for the birth he was more than ready for the outside world. The problem was that the Doctor had an awful lot of trouble pulling him out:

‘Your son has an extremely large butt. I’m afraid we’ll have to do a C-section.’

My daughter-in-law happens to be a Midwife and wryly commentated that that might indeed be necessary, although when his massive hard steel bum is finally revealed she confessed that was outside her professional experience! I suggest that,unlike my grandsons, some young readers might not know much about the details of childbirth so might ask some questions.

Once he is safely delivered he immediately begins to demonstrate an extraordinary ability to fart and to produce huge quantities of bright green, extremely stinky poo. An ordinary diaper / nappy is hopelessly inadequate, so he has to wear baby blankets. His parents, Mr and Mrs Flatbottom are astounded with their son’s appearance but of course love him unconditionally. The problem is that his rapidly growing bottom is soon proving to be a dangerous weapon that can break concrete and worse. We were all open mouthed with concern when he managed to inadvertently break his poor Grandad’s knees!

The hospital proves to be a strange and threatening place that is staffed by several Doctors and Nurses who want to do serious harm to this unusual Baby. Each eventful chapter reveals more about how he is going to have to save his parents and the wider world from evil. Apart from his remarkable physical characteristics, he can also speak and solve complex problems so he is well equipped. As the story progresses, he has to cope with rollercoaster challenges with starting school, making friends and defeating bullies, all before his first birthday! My grandsons were entranced by his spectacularly smelly adventures and enjoyed multiple laugh out loud moments. I was more impressed with his overall sense of decency and justice.

We recommend this entertaining book which is directly available from Packed House Publications , LLC.


Karen Argent

May 2024