Lost Sloth


A sloth wins a shopping spree but first has to find his way to the store—fast.

Lost Sloth is an endearingly silly tale about the lethargic creature’s adventure to claim a prize he doesn’t quite understand: “What’s a spree?” The storyline isn’t entirely logical but echoed refrains—highlighted in this reading by the Pixies’ Francis Black—keep the story moving while illustrations overflowing with details reward repeat readings.

In another life, I tracked J. Otto Seibold down in an escapade that rivaled the lost sloth’s. Then a New Yorker, I had never been to Oakland, and consequently went several stops in the wrong direction, back-tracking on BART till what should have been an hour trip was several, wandered through a park, and eventually found his studio. J. had been elusive in all our communications, so I wasn’t totally surprised when no one answered the doorbell. With nothing else to do but unwilling to give up, I sat, and waited. Unlike Sloth, I didn’t fall asleep in a pile of pillows, but I, too, was rewarded. J., remembering my visit, eventually went to see if I happened to be on the stoop. When he found me, we laughed and spent a sunny afternoon chatting. In talking, I realized it’s exactly this type of journey that J. seems to seek, embrace, and reward in his work: as we follow along with Sloth, he puts all the energy he has into his endeavor, in spite of not being sure what to expect in return for his efforts. In the end, Sloth gets exactly what he needs—and revels in it.

Find Lost Sloth at your local library.