Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Review - Pink!


by Lynne Rickards
illustrated by Margaret Chamberlain
Date: 2008
Publisher: Chicken House
Reading level: C
Book type: picture book
Pages: 32
Format: e-book
Source: library

When Patrick wakes up one day to find he has inexplicably turned bright pink, he sees red! "Whoever heard of a pink penguin?" he cries. "And boys can't be pink!" After too much teasing, he's had enough. "I don't fit in here anymore," he tells his parents. "I'm going to Africa to see the flamingos." But poor Patrick doesn't fit in with them, either: He can't stand on one leg, skim the water for food, or fly off with the rest of the flock. So he returns home--and everyone is happy to see him! In fact, his friends are green with envy over his exotic trip. Ends up being hot pink is pretty cool!

(synopsis from Goodreads)

Pink! tells the story of Patrick the penguin who wakes up one day to find that he's turned pink. In a fit of gender conformity, he declares that boys can't be pink, only to be chastened somewhat when his father tells him about flamingoes. Feeling like he no longer fits in with the other black-and-white penguins, he decides to head to Africa to live with the flamingoes. But when he gets there, he finds he doesn't fit in with those tall pink birds, either. So he heads home and everybody wants to know about his trip. The book finishes with Patrick declaring that penguins belong at the South Pole.


First of all, penguins don't live at the South Pole. They live near the water where they can feed, not in the landlocked middle of a continent. Second... there are penguins in Africa, contrary to what Patrick might think. What a missed opportunity to teach kids about the range and habitat of penguins!

This book rubbed me the wrong way, almost from the beginning. There's no reason for Patrick's colour change. It reinforced gender stereotypes. And it gives inaccurate information about penguins.

Premise: 2/5
Meter: n/a
Writing: 2/5
Illustrations: 2/5
Originality: 3/5

Enjoyment: 2/5

Overall: 2.17 out of 5

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