The Biggest Pest on Eighth Avenue

Book Description

The Biggest Pest on Eighth Avenue is a hilar­i­ous ear­ly read­er about hid­den tal­ents and the­atri­cal aspi­ra­tions. AAAEEEYAH! There goes Mary Lou’s broth­er again. Now he’s actu­al­ly on top of the garage.

How are Mary Lou, Leo, and Lynn sup­posed to get ready to put on The Haunt­ed Cas­tle of Doom when Tom­my keeps pes­ter­ing them?

The play is about to start and they haven’t even had time to rehearse yet. It’s going to be a dis­as­ter! The show must go on.

Reviews and Comments

“Lawlor’s text offers some spunky dialogue…cheery illus­tra­tions.” (Pub­lish­ers Week­ly)

A Note from Laurie

David ThompsonThe Biggest Pest on Eighth Avenue is based on the antics of Lau­rie Lawlor’s real-life younger broth­er, who (in the book) saves the day when the neigh­bor­hood kids’ play is a dis­as­ter and who (in real life) always did have the­atri­cal aspi­ra­tions and grew up to become tal­ent­ed Broad­way play­wright David Thomp­son, with plays like Chica­go (the 1996 revival), The Scotts­boro Boys, and Steel Pier to his cred­it.

Accord­ing to Lau­rie, he real­ly did do the pesky things Tom­my does in the book, includ­ing try­ing to flush him­self down the toi­let. She says of the plays they put on as kids, “He was the per­fect fear­less hero or das­tard­ly vil­lain, the only one who could make dra­mat­ic death-defy­ing leaps from the garage roof or top of a step lad­der. My poor grand­moth­er declined over baby-sit­ting again after Tom­my repeat­ed­ly prac­ticed run­ning, div­ing, and ‘surf­ing’ down the sec­ond floor stair­way on his stom­ach. His con­tin­u­ing brav­ery came in very handy once he reached Broad­way!”

Lau­rie attrib­ut­es her and her broth­er’s cre­ative suc­cess­es in large part to their child­hood expe­ri­ences. As the eldest of six chil­dren, Lau­rie learned to cre­ate scary sto­ries about var­i­ous parts of their house in order to achieve some peace and qui­et for her­self. Plus, their moth­er “nev­er came out­side to help sew cos­tumes or paint scenery … [she] left us alone and did not both­er us as long as we did not burn the garage down. Her non-inter­fer­ence was indeed a gift!”

Biggest Pest on Eighth Avenue

writ­ten by Lau­rie Lawlor
illus­trat­ed by Cyn­thia Fish­er
Hol­i­day House, 1997

Please look for this book at
your favorite pub­lic library
or used book­seller.