Review of the Week: Red: A Crayon’s Story

red a crayon's storyHall, Michael. Red: A Crayon’s Story. Michael Hall, Illus. Picture Book.
Greenwillow, 02/2015. [37]p. $17.99. 978-0-06-225207-4,
PLB $18.89 978-0-06-225209-8.
OUTSTANDING. GRADES PRE-3.
Red is a crayon who is clearly blue, but no one is able to see his true color until a special new friend shows him that it’s okay to be himself. Digitally-combined crayon drawings and cut paper tell Red’s story, with alternating b&w spreads, adding contrast and tension. The simple narrative text—told by a pencil—combines with dialogue and humorous asides from the other crayons, illustrating the frustration and despair Red feels when he disappoints his friends and family. Themes of personal doubt, the hurtful judgments of others, and ultimately self-acceptance
fill this touching and hopeful book. This title will be popular with a variety of ages; younger children will enjoy the humor, while older ones will root for Red to discover his true identity.
Melissa Morwood, Palo Alto PL

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