Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Review - The Happy Pumpkin

The Happy Pumpkin

illustrated by MacKenzie Haley
Date: 2021
Publisher: DK Publishing
Reading level: C
Book type: picture book
Pages: 16
Format: e-book
Source: library

On Halloween, the scariest and spookiest night of the year, pumpkins are looking forward to meeting their new owners! While everyone is getting picked, one pumpkin feels left out - the happiest and smiliest of the lot. He can't help but think that nobody wants a not-so-spooky pumpkin on Halloween. Will our Happy Pumpkin find a home in time?

The adventure of this perky little pumpkin will teach little ones vital life lessons about being themselves and not judging others based on their appearance. This heartwarming story is filled with adorable, engaging illustrations - the perfect Halloween treat for you and your little one to read together at storytime!

(synopsis from Goodreads)

This book doesn't even make sense. Judging by the fact that there isn't even an author listed, it looks like nothing more than an opportunity for the publisher to cash in on Halloween by releasing a book about pumpkins. But it's ridiculous. Near the beginning, the book states:

Today, every pumpkin in town
would be chosen by a child and
made into a shining, but
SCARY jack-o'-lantern.

What's the problem? The accompanying illustration is of a field full of jack-o'-lanterns. These pumpkins are already carved! I guess the idea of plunging a carving knife into an anthropomorphized pumpkin's head was just too much. But now the story doesn't make any sense.

So, anyway, nobody wants the Happy Pumpkin because he's smiley rather than scary. Finally, a little boy who's scared of Halloween takes the Happy Pumpkin. And we're all taught that we shine the brightest when we're just being ourselves.

The illustrations are fine. They're kind of cute, actually. But I feel sorry for the illustrator when they were given this mess of a story. I'll bet there was a lot of head-scratching going on. "So the kids are supposed to pick pre-carved pumpkins and turn them into jack-o'-lanterns? What kind of pumpkin patch is this?"

Just another holiday money grab. Moving on...

Premise: 1/5
Meter: n/a
Writing: 3/5
Illustrations: 3/5
Originality: 2/5

Enjoyment: 1/5

Overall: 1.83 out of 5

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