Wednesday, August 21, 2013

The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt, illustrated by Oliver Jeffers

When I was in school, and even when I was teaching in a classroom, Friday afternoons were always reserved for arts and crafts.  In the early grades, from 1st to 3rd, it was the time we drew pictures, or made cards for any given holiday or even illustrated something from a social studies lesson we had during the week.  I loved Friday afternoons in school, I loved the smell of my Crayolas, I loved arts and  crafts.

So, when I picked up a copy of The Day the Crayons Quit, I was immediately taken back to those wonderful halcyon Friday afternoon arts and crafts days.   Then I started reading...

Young Duncan thought he was going to have a little Crayola time in school when he pulled out his crayons to draw a picture.  But instead of finding crayons in his crayon box, he finds a bunch of letters  wrapped together in a little bakery box string (nice touch, Jeffers, I like it!).

What was this all about?  Well, it seems Duncan's crayons aren't very happy and they have gone on strike.  Each color has written him a letter stating its particular grievance and a picture Duncan had drawn using that color to make their case.  Red feels hard pressed because it has to work so hard, even on holidays, Blue is tired, Yellow and Orange are arguing over which one is the real color of the sun, and poor Peach can't even come out of the box because its wrapper has been peeled off and now Peach is naked.  Well, you get the picture

And in the end, Duncan comes up with the perfect solution for ending the crayon strike.

The first time I read it, I was going home on the bus one afternoon and I was laughing so much that the lady next to me started looking around for another sear.  Not to worry, I told her, The Day the Crayons Quit is one of the funniest books I have read in a long time, and is a book that will appeal to kids as well as adults.   By the time I got off the bus, we both had read the book and she thought she just might buy it for the grands.

A word about the Jeffers' illustrations - they are perfection, I couldn't have done better myself in 1st grade.  But it takes a really talented grownup to pull of illustrations and letter that looks like something out of childhood.  And naturally, the illustrations and letters were all done with crayons.

The Day the Crayons Quit is an epistolary novel that is sure to become a classic (said with tongue in cheek).

This book is recommended for readers of all ages.
This book was purchased for my personal library.


  1. Thanks for this review - I just added this one to our wish list. I love the concept of the crayons, and it looks adorable!

    Tales of a Bookworm

  2. Awesome review! I will be adding this to my "wish list" to read with my kindergarten aged child. Thanks for sharing!

  3. I cannot imagine a world without crayons. Sounds like a catastrophe! I have to look at this one soon!

  4. This sounds delightful! One of my grandkids is going to get this for Christmas for sure!! Ho ho ho...

  5. My kids and I LOVE this book. I cannot remember the last time I laughed out loud so much. Nice job with the review.
    Visiting form the KidLit Blog Hop.

  6. Oh we want it want it want it. Going on the TBR pile, thanks so much for linking in to the Kid Lit Blog Hop

  7. Jeffers and crayons sound like a perfect combo

  8. This book sounds fantastic! I just love the idea behind the book. I remember when my daughter was around 1, maybe 1.5, I was eagerly awaiting the time when she could start using crayons! Robin Egg Blue - best color EVER! :) Thanks so much for sharing in the Kid Lit Blog Hop.

  9. What a fabulous book – thank you so much for telling us about it. I know two little girls (and one big one – me!) who would love this.

  10. Ah... crayons. We're travelling right now (2 week beach vacation) and crayons have been the best for keeping my little girl occupied. Thanks for the book review - it's been added to our "to read" list!


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