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Monday, July 9, 2018

Vivid: Poems and Notes About Color, written and illustrated by Julie Paschkis. Henry Holt and Company, Macmillan. Raincoast, 2018. $23.50 ages 7 and up


Oh, what did I do?

Even though blue is often 
associated with sadness, 
it is the most popular 
color, according to polls
taken in ten countries ... " 

I love the fact that Julie Paschkis chooses color as her focus for this new book of poetry. Her artwork is always bold and appealing. I first admired her work when I read Mrs. Chicken and the Hungry Crocodile (Henry Holt, 2003) and then Through Georgia's Eyes (Henry Holt, 2006). If you want to see more of the art she makes and to read her blog, go to  I'm sure you will find it interesting and inspiring.

That being said, I wasn't surprised to find I really like this book, too. It is a gorgeous examination of color. I admire the way Julie has placed her art alongside the varied and enjoyable poems, and the short, informative paragraphs included about each spread's featured color.

The poetry is as varied as the art with each turn of the page. One that I especially like has a connection to a fairy tale, and the role color plays in our language. She even leaves her audience with a question to ponder.

"Red to Pink

Jack, in the red,
sold old brown cow
for three green beans.
Felt blue.
Black magic or green thumb?
Beans grew.
Up, up slow.
Fee. Fi. Fo.
Ogre grim.
White lie.
Jack didn't die.
Got bold.
Stole gold.
Quick, think!
Down in a wink.
Jack, tickled pink.

Lots of expressions include colors: 
feeling BLUE, tickled PINK, telling
a WHITE lie. Why? Why are you 
GREEN with envy instead of
ORANGE with envy?"


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