Thursday, May 28, 2020

Review - Harold and the Purple Crayon

Harold and the Purple Crayon
by Crockett Johnson
Date: 1955
Publisher: HarperCollins
Reading level: C
Book type: picture book
Pages: 64
Format: e-book
Source: library

Share this timeless classic with a new generation of readers! The handsome retro look and the focus on the power of imagination resonate with today's parents and children, making Harold and the Purple Crayon a joy to share.

One evening, after thinking it over for some time, Harold decided to go for a walk in the moonlight. Armed only with an oversize purple crayon, young Harold draws himself a landscape full of wonder and excitement. Harold and his crayon travel through woods and across seas and past dragons before returning to bed, safe and sound.

Full of funny twists and surprises, this joyful story shows just how far your imagination can take you. Harold and the Purple Crayon has delighted readers of all ages for decades and has lost none of its imagination-sparking wonder.

(synopsis from Goodreads)

This book has been out for a long time! Despite the fact that it's now 65 years old, it reads as if it could've been written yesterday. Aside from the double length that most picture books of that era had, it's a book that would fit in well in any modern child's library.

Harold decides to go for a walk. Armed with his purple crayon, he draws himself a few adventures, and eventually gets just a little bit lost. The moon, however, has been following him the whole time. With a bit of smart thinking, Harold figures out how to make his way home again.

I don't remember ever reading this one, despite its age. I have, however, read Aaron Becker's Journey, which is a wordless picture book in a similar vein featuring children influencing their adventures with a drawing tool. Fans of either of these books will probably find much to enjoy in the other.

Overall, this was a pleasant surprise. I often find picture books from the mid-20th century a bit long and drawn out. But Harold and the Purple Crayon rolls along at a great clip, and leaves the reader wondering what adventures Harold and his crayon will have next.

Quotable moment:

Premise: 4/5
Meter: n/a
Writing: 5/5
Illustrations: 4/5
Originality: 4/5

Enjoyment: 5/5

Overall: 4.5 out of 5

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