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Animal Theme/Character, Book Reviews, Early/Young Readers, Fantasy/Science Fiction, Picture Books

TUESDAY by David Wiesner

By David WiesnerSENSATIONAL!

During a recent trip to the library my 3rd & 4th Grader came running up to me holding Tuesday.

“Have you read this book, Mom?” they asked

“No, I don’t think I have,” I said.

“You HAVE to read this book!”  They promptly added it to the top of the pile of books I was checking out.

I am so glad they did!  After reading Tuesday it has instantly become one of my favorite picture books!  It is told in pictures with only short moments of text to inform the reader of the day and time.

On the Tuesday of the title we observe what seem to be ordinary, everyday frogs on their lilypads.  The text tells us it’s:

TUESDAY EVENING, AROUND EIGHT.

ON the next page we see the frogs flying through the air, their lilypads like magic carpets.  The book details the frogs’ many adventures until they return to the ground and their ordinary, everyday pond sometime after 4:38am.

The book ends with a hilarious image of police vehicles and a detective puzzling over the scads of lilypads and the bizarre reports of the previous evening.  The last bit of text reads:

NEXT TUESDAY, 7:58 P.M.

I won’t spoil the ending, but I will say it’s delightfully chuckle-worthy!

As with any Caldecott Medal book (the Award for illustration in children’s literature), the strength of the story–in this case its foundation, its details and its magic–is in the illustrations.  They are magnificent:  smooth flat colors in rich blues and greens with the flying images almost three-dimensionally jumping off the page into the reader’s lap!

A spectacular addition to a classroom or home library, I intend to use it in my theatre classes to motivate imagination in both physical improvisation and writing original scenes.

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