While fooling with a gun, Tom Potts shoots a bullet that seems to be unstoppable. A literal hole on each page traces the bullet’s path as it wreaks havoc across various scenes until it meets its match in a particularly sturdy cake. A native of McDonough County, Illinois, Newell built a reputation in the 1880s and 1890s for his humorous drawings and poems, which appeared in Harper’s Weekly, Harper’s Bazaar, Scribner’s Magazine, The Saturday Evening Post, Judge, and other publications. He later wrote and illustrated several popular children’s books, such as Topsys and Turvys (1893), a collection of poems and images which could be viewed upside-down or right-side-up; The Hole Book (1908), featured above; and The Slant Book (1910), which took the shape of a rhomboid and told the story of a baby carriage careening down a hill.
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