Saturday, July 23, 2011
RRRALPH, written and illustrated by Lois Ehlert. Simon & Schuster, 2011. $19.99 ages 2 andup
“What’s your name?”
"Ralph, what’s on that tree?”
“BARK BARK BARK.”
What could be funnier than that for young readers? Can you just hear them repeating every response that Ralph gives to the questions asked of him? I sure can.
The author lets her audience know immediately that Ralph is a dog that talks. Young kids can suspend belief and enjoy what this book offers from the get-go! They will soon be caught up in the humorous exploits shown in the clever and inspiring illustrations. The questions are asked of Ralph and his responses are an ongoing variety of barks. Finally, he tires out and needs sleep to ensure the ability to answer even more questions tomorrow. The only sound we now hear from him is the proverbial ZZZZZZ!
Humor abounds and kids will be tempted to try and guess the answers to the questions put to the energetic and lovable Ralph. The collage illustrations are, at once, familiar and exemplary. Lois Ehlert helps me believe that I can make art from found objects...that is what I so love about her books. There is so much to see, and such creativity at work with gorgeous bright colors and large, readable print. They are an incredible incentive for children to use their imaginations to create their own lovely collage art.
What a wonderful addition to her most impressive body of work!