63 of 64 people found the following review helpful
Non-traditional Seuss - on the acceptability of emotions,
This review is from: My Many Colored Days (Hardcover)This book is very different from other Dr. Seuss books. First, the whimsical rhymes and made-up words which characterize Seuss in such classics as One Fish, Two Fish..., and The Lorax are absent here. Instead there is a simple elegance in couplets which brings colors and images together with emotions and moods. Second, the playful cartoon-style illustrations of more light-hearted classics are replaced by Steve Johnson and Lou Fancher's more abstract paintings. These paintings cover the whole page with deep colors, drenched in emotion. Between the wonderful images suggested by the couplets and the engaging art (not illustration!) this book brings home a message to kids of all ages about the acceptability of their moods and emotions.
My daughters' reaction to this book has been tremendous. My older daughter (4 y.o.) wants to linger on each page to examine the art while my younger daughter (10 mos.) tries to feel the texture of the paint. I can see their faces reacting to the feelings suggested by each color and rhyme. We don't have many children's books that are 'illustrated' in a manner as poignant as this book (but we have an extensive library which most of the classics). Yet despite the 'message' it is never preachy - just a matter-of-fact statement that we all have emotions and they are all OK. Seuss provides the images as a frame of reference to help kids understand and explain them, which is especially helpful for little ones who haven't yet developed the vocabulary and reasoning to figure it out for themselves.
The best benefit is not necessarily even for kids to understand themselves, but to help kids understand grow-ups' moods - why mommy is tired after a long day at work, or why daddy is frustrated when he burns dinner, etc. I can just tell my daughters that I am in a 'grey' mood for a while, and all becomes crystal clear!