It's in chapter 3 of Gary Schmidt's Okay for Now that the plate titledArctic Tern from the Audubon book in the public library goes missing, and the drawing has been replaced with a plate titled Large-Billed Puffins. By chapter 4 , even the drawing of the puffins...
It's in chapter 3 of Gary Schmidt's Okay for Now that the plate titled Arctic Tern from the Audubon book in the public library goes missing, and the drawing has been replaced with a plate titled Large-Billed Puffins. By chapter 4, even the drawing of the puffins has gone missing and has been replaced by another drawing.
In chapter 3, Doug returns to the library to show Mr. Powell what progress he has made on drawing the feathers of the Arctic tern. As he hands the drawing to Mr. Powell, Doug says he could tell "something was wrong" because Mr. Powell did not lay the drawing across the top of the glass case so he could compare Doug's work with Audubon's work. Instead, Mr. Powell just takes Doug's drawing in hand and studies it. When Doug makes his way to the case, he sees the Arctic tern plate is gone and has been replaced. Doug is extremely upset by the plate of the large-billed puffins because he thinks they look like very stupid birds:
Whatever they were, these birds were chumps. Fat-bodied and thick-legged and looking about as dumb as any birds could possibly be and still remember to breathe. One looked like it had just fallen into the water and was doing everything he could to keep his face from getting wet. The one on land stood there watching like a jerk. (Ch. 3)
Regardless of what Doug sees as being the stupidity of the birds, by chapter 4, he begins learning to draw them with Mr. Powell as an exercise in learning to create depth. After working very hard to get the foot of one of the puffins to look like it is in the water, not "in front of the water," Doug returns to the library with his drawing only to discover that the large-billed puffins plate is now also gone, just like the Arctic tern. The drawing of puffins has been replaced with a picture of a dying bird Doug thinks is the most horrific picture he has ever seen.
At this point in the story, Mr. Powell confesses that the plates are being sold by the Town Council of Marysville because the town needs money to pay off its debts.