Reviews for Day the Crayons Quit
Booklist Reviews 2013 July #1
Duncan's crayons are on strike. One morning he opens his desk looking for them and, in their place, finds a pack of letters detailing their grievances, one crayon at a time. Red is tired. Beige is bored. Black is misunderstood. Peach is naked! The conceit is an enticing one, and although the crayons' complaints are not entirely unique (a preponderance centers around some variation of overuse), the artist's indelible characterization contributes significant charm. Indeed, Jeffers' ability to communicate emotion in simple gestures, even on a skinny cylinder of wax, elevates crayon drawing to remarkable heights. First-class bookmaking, with clean design, ample trim size, and substantial paper stock, adds to the quality feel. A final spread sees all things right, as Duncan fills a page with bright, delightful imagery, addressing each of the crayons' issues and forcing them into colorful cooperation. Kids who already attribute feelings to their playthings will never look at crayons the same way again. Copyright 2013 Booklist Reviews.
Horn Book Guide Reviews 2014 Spring
All Duncan wants to do is color, but the crayons have gone on strike, and they've left Duncan a pile of letters listing their grievances. As the drama unfolds, Jeffers's spare crayon illustrations pop off the white background, adding movement and momentum to the imaginative narrative. The vibrant final spread addressing each color's concerns leaves all parties with an amicable resolution.
Horn Book Magazine Reviews 2013 #6
All Duncan wants to do is color, but when he opens his box of crayons, he finds himself in the midst of a bitter labor dispute. The crayons have gone on strike, and they've left Duncan a pile of letters listing their grievances. From undervalued beige and pink to overworked red and blue, each crayon's letter clearly states a specific request for a change in working conditions. Even the green crayon, who has no complaints on its own behalf, explains that both yellow and orange, who are no longer speaking to each other, feel they should be the color of the sun. ("Please settle this soon because they're driving the rest of us crazy!") As drama unfolds among the colors, Jeffers's spare crayon illustrations pop off the white background, adding movement and momentum to the imaginative narrative. The personified crayons express such emotion in so few crude strokes, particularly the discouraged beige crayon with its furrowed brow and slumped shoulders, standing forlorn next to a single sprig of wheat (the only thing Duncan uses beige for besides turkey dinners). Photographs of the handwritten letters and coloring book pages establish verisimilitude in an otherwise outrageous premise, which amplifies the comedy. The vibrant final spread addressing each color's concerns leaves all parties with an amicable resolution and readers with a sense of satisfaction. shara l. hardeso Copyright 2013 Horn Book Magazine.
Kirkus Reviews 2013 May #1
Duncan wants to draw, but instead of crayons, he finds a stack of letters listing the crayons' demands in this humorous tale. Red is overworked, laboring even on holidays. Gray is exhausted from coloring expansive spaces (elephants, rhinos and whales). Black wants to be considered a color-in color, and Peach? He's naked without his wrapper! This anthropomorphized lot amicably requests workplace changes in hand-lettered writing, explaining their work stoppage to a surprised Duncan. Some are tired, others underutilized, while a few want official titles. With a little creativity and a lot of color, Duncan saves the day. Jeffers delivers energetic and playful illustrations, done in pencil, paint and crayon. The drawings are loose and lively, and with few lines, he makes his characters effectively emote. Clever spreads, such as Duncan's "white cat in the snow" perfectly capture the crayons' conundrum, and photographic representations of both the letters and coloring pages offer another layer of texture, lending to the tale's overall believability. A comical, fresh look at crayons and color. (Picture book. 3-7) Copyright Kirkus 2013 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.
Publishers Weekly Reviews 2013 April #3
Although the crayons in this inventive catalogue stop short of quitting, most feel disgruntled. The rank and file express their views in letters written to a boy, Duncan. Red complains of having to "work harder than any of your other crayons" on fire trucks and Santas; a beige crayon declares, "I'm tired of being called ‘light brown' or ‘dark tan' because I am neither." White feels "empty" from Duncan's white-on-white coloring, and a "naked" Peach wails, "Why did you peel off my paper wrapping?" Making a noteworthy debut, Daywalt composes droll missives that express aggravation and aim to persuade, while Jeffers's (This Moose Belongs to Me) crayoned images underscore the waxy cylinders' sentiments: each spread features a facsimile of a letter scrawled, naturally, in the crayon's hue; a facing illustration evidences how Duncan uses the crayon, as in a picture of a giant elephant, rhino, and hippo (Gray laments, "That's a lot of space to color in all by myself"). These memorable personalities will leave readers glancing apprehensively at their own crayon boxes. Ages 3-7. Author's agent: Jeff Dwyer, Dwyer & O'Grady. (June) [Page ]. Copyright 2013 PWxyz LLC
School Library Journal Reviews 2013 July
K-Gr 2--In this delightfully imaginative take on a beloved childhood activity, a young boy's crayons have had enough. Fed up with their workload and eager to voice their grievances, they pen letters to Duncan detailing their frustrations. Energetic and off-the-wall, the complaints are always wildly funny, from the neurotically neat Purple ("If you DON'T START COLORING INSIDE the lines soon… I'm going to COMPLETELY LOSE IT") to the underappreciated White ("If I didn't have a black outline, you wouldn't even know I was THERE!"). Daywalt has an instinctive understanding of the kind of humor that will resonate with young children, such as Orange and Yellow duking it out over which of them represents the true color of the sun or Peach's lament that ever since its wrapper has fallen off, it feels naked. Though Jeffers's messily scrawled crayon illustrations are appropriately childlike, they're also infused with a sophisticated wit that perfectly accompanies the laugh-out-loud text; for example, a letter from Beige, in which he bemoans being tasked with drawing dull items like turkey dinners, is paired with an image of the crestfallen crayon drooping over beside a blade of wheat. Later on, Pink grumbles about constantly being passed over for less-feminine colors while the opposite page depicts a discomfited-looking pink monster and cowboy being derided by a similarly hued dinosaur. This colorful title should make for an uproarious storytime and may even inspire some equally creative art projects.--Mahnaz Dar, Library Journal [Page 59]. (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.