Wednesday, November 11, 2009

For Just One Day

Chronicle Books
Laura Leuck; Illustrations by Marc Boutavant

Some of my favorite books are those that plant an idea into the mind of a child and really get the imagination racing. I love to see the wheels turning and hear the wild thoughts that burst forth. After reading this, every child will come up with half a dozen animals they would like to be transformed into!

The entire book is built on a simple premise with great execution. Just one question with nine unique responses: If you could be an animal for just one day, what would you be and why? The answers are produced in both beautiful and comical illustrations.

The little boy telling the story has one heck of an imagination. If he could swim the Nile, he would be be a creeping crocodile. But not just any croc, you know. This one wears a tiny red hat and has the sharpest, snapping smile.

Many of the animals pictured have taken on some of the human characteristics or appearances. The rabbit hops along in a striped shirt and green overalls, while the porcupine lazes back, writing in her journal. The illustrations are bright and clever, and altogether very enjoyable.

The only question remaining after reading this book is - what will your kids come up with? In addition to the animals mentioned here, ours wanted to be a gorilla, a one-humped camel and a slow-moving turtle. The very last page includes a little surprise - a shiny mirror that reflects back the most special someone in the whole world.

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