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The Day the Crayons Quit Hardcover – June 27, 2013

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Editorial Reviews Review

Amazon Best Children's Book of 2013: The Day the Crayons Quit, Drew Daywalt’s clever story of a box of crayons gone rogue will get the whole family laughing at the letters written by the occupants of the ubiquitous yellow and green box. The combination of text and Oliver Jeffers' illustrations match the colors' personalities beautifully as the crayons share their concern, appreciation, or downright frustration: yellow and orange demand to know the true color of the sun, while green--clearly the people pleaser of the bunch--is happy with his workload of crocodiles, trees, and dinosaurs. Peach crayon wants to know why his wrapper was torn off, leaving him naked and in hiding; blue is exhausted and, well, worn out; and pink wants a little more paper time. The result of this letter writing campaign is colorful creativity and after reading this book I will never look at crayons the same way again--nor would I want to. ---Seira Wilson

From Booklist

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. Grades K-3. --Thom Barthelmess

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 3 - 7 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 2
  • Lexile Measure: 730L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Philomel Books; 1st edition (June 27, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0399255370
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399255373
  • Product Dimensions: 10.3 x 0.4 x 10.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2,653 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #27 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

337 of 349 people found the following review helpful By Alice M. Adler on June 27, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I read this book to my 5-year-old daughter and when we got to the end she asked me to read it again. When I got to the end of the second reading she announced she had an idea about drawing "live crayons like in the book" and embarked on a project of drawing different color crayons with colored wardrobes to match and made a "dress the crayons" game out of it. She loves to have books read to her, but this is one of the only times my short-attention-span kid has asked for the same book twice in a row and the first time a book as inspired such a burst of creativity.

This book would be great for all sorts of ages: from very little kids who will like the idea of the talking crayons and the cute illustrations, to much older kids who will find the crayon's witty banter and creative complaints extremely funny.

This is going to be my new gift for everything from baby showers to birthdays to Christmas! Don't hesitate to order this one, your kids will want to hear it over and over.
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180 of 190 people found the following review helpful By Jennifer Doetsch on July 2, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am not ashamed to admit it, I'm 41 yrs old and just purchased this book...for myself! I work at a library and when this book came in every person who read/looked at this book said they were going to purchase this book for either a child, or children in the family, or for themselves! I can't say enough good things about this book, do yourself a favor buy it! You'll smile and laugh and love it each time you read it!
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203 of 225 people found the following review helpful By Author/Reviewer Geri Ahearn TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on June 27, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Award-winning writer/director of film and TV Drew Daywalt, and New York Times bestseller Oliver Jeffers, deliver an entertaining children's story that is playful, and packed with fun. This delightful story will have children laughing, reading, and sharing their own thoughts, while giving crayons a whole new meaning. The colorful, stunning illustrations come to life as each colorful crayon gives their complaint, while protesting about their color. Orange and Yellow are not speaking to each other for their own reasons, Beige doesn't want to compete with Brown,Blue is tired of coloring lots of water, and it seems that only Green has no complaints. What complaint does Black have, and will Orange and Yellow learn to compromise? A colorful solution must be met as all the complaints pile up, so that the crayons never think about calling it quits again. Poor Duncan just wants to color, and he wants his crayons to be happy. Does Duncan solve all the crayon problems, and get an A+ for coloring? There are several Dear Duncan letters to solve as children giggle their way to the end. Fascinating, inviting, and entertaining throughout. Highly recommended for teachers,parents, and child-care providers!
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97 of 106 people found the following review helpful By Mary B. Hogan on July 10, 2013
Format: Hardcover
You know a picture book must be good if you catch your teenagers reading it and laughing, and then rereading their favorite parts! By that measure alone, this one is a winner. The premise is lighthearted and humorous. One day Duncan reaches for his crayon box to color and instead finds a stack of letters awaiting him. Each crayon has written to him with engaging voice and personality. There are complaints, requests, and compliments. Each crayon presents its case with a unique voice and with much fun for the reader. How will Duncan keep his crayons happy and resume his "coloring career?" At the end Duncan manages to find a creative solution that satisfies him, his crayons and his teacher!

Out of the many picture books I've previewed this summer with an eye to acquiring for the classroom, this is one of the few that has made it to the "must buy" stack. It is a delight from start to finish and I can't wait to share it with my second graders this fall. I can foresee using this as a mentor text to teach about point of view, voice, persuasive letter writing and more. More importantly, I know kids will immediately fall into the spirit of the story. I can already hear them giggling at the humor and predicting what each color will write. I suspect they'll look at their crayons through a different lens and perhaps even be inspired to add a new color to their coloring repertoire!

Bottom line, this book is a delightful read aloud for all and a wonderful addition to any home or classroom library.
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105 of 117 people found the following review helpful By D_shrink VINE VOICE on June 28, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
It seems that our young narrator, Duncan, gets to school and is about to open his crayon box to find a stack of letters on top. The letters were individually sent by the various colored crayons with a myriad of complaints,except for GREEN, which is happy with its lot, but would like Duncan to settle the disputes the other colors seems to have. Some complain of being tired from being used too much, some are depressed at not being used enough, and one even complains that Duncan uses it to color outside the lines [for shame for shame] :-) Beige hates playing second fiddle to brown and pink thinks that Duncan feels only a girl would ever use pink. Duncan finally figures out a way to make all the crayons happy and the story ends well.

I thought the drawings were very representative of what a kindergartner or first/second grader might do and kids of that age should easily be able to relate. A quite original idea for anthropomorphizing inanimate objects and making them come to life and thrill the young ones at the same time. Each of the various colored crayons had a letter written to Duncan in their very own color.
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