A Ball for Daisy

A Ball for Daisy

4.0 11
by Chris Raschka
     
 

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Winner of the 2012 Randolph Caldecott Medal

This New York Times Bestseller and New York Times Best Illustrated Book relates a story about love and loss as only Chris Rashcka can tell it. Any child who has ever had a beloved toy break will relate to Daisy's anguish when her favorite ball is destroyed by a bigger dog. In the tradition of his

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Overview

Winner of the 2012 Randolph Caldecott Medal

This New York Times Bestseller and New York Times Best Illustrated Book relates a story about love and loss as only Chris Rashcka can tell it. Any child who has ever had a beloved toy break will relate to Daisy's anguish when her favorite ball is destroyed by a bigger dog. In the tradition of his nearly wordless picture book Yo! Yes?, Caldecott Medalist Chris Raschka explores in pictures the joy and sadness that having a special toy can bring. Raschka's signature swirling, impressionistic illustrations and his affectionate story will particularly appeal to young dog lovers and teachers and parents who have children dealing with the loss of something special.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In a wordless book with gentle, dreamlike spreads, Daisy, a feisty, black-eared dog plays with a beloved red ball indoors and out, before a climactic encounter with another dog in the park. Working loosely in ink, watercolor, and gouache, Caldecott-winner Raschka (The Hello, Goodbye Window) alternates between large closeups of Daisy—curled up with the ball on a sofa, looking nervous when the ball lands behind a fence—and smaller panels for action scenes. Raschka conveys a bevy of canine moods (ecstatic, expectant, downtrodden) with brush strokes reminiscent of calligraphy, while the red ball adds striking contrast. When a brown dog causes the ball to pop, Daisy stares at it, nudges it, sniffs it, and shakes it in her mouth before gazing helplessly at her owner. But returning to the park later, Daisy’s forlorn expression turns gleeful as the same brown dog reappears with a blue ball, letting Daisy take it home. Readers should relate to Daisy’s sadness over the loss of her treasured object while understanding that such losses can sometimes lead to unexpected gains—maybe even a friend. Ages 3–7. (May)
From the Publisher

2012 Randolph Caldecott Medal Winner

Starred Review, School Library Journal, August 2011:
"Raschka’s genius lies in capturing the essence of situations that are deeply felt by children."

Starred Review, Horn Book, September/October 2011:
"a story that is noteworthy for both its artistry and its child appeal."

Starred Review, Kirkus Reviews, December 1, 2011:
“Rarely, perhaps never, has so steep an emotional arc been drawn with such utter, winning simplicity.”

Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Daisy, a frisky dog, plays happily with her big red ball, as full-page illustrations and action vignettes start this wordless tale of the discovery of a friend. Daisy is taken to the park to play with her ball, only to have a brown dog snatch it away and break it. Daisy's distress at the deflated ball is apparent. Taken home by her young mistress, she is inconsolable. At the park next day, however, they meet the brown dog, his mistress, and her big blue ball. The dogs play happily together until their mistresses wave goodbye. Daisy is pleased to get to take the blue ball home. Raschka's typical ink, watercolor, and gouache almost slap-dash images generate happy emotion as they create just enough background and characters to add conviction to the adventure of this most appealing pup. No words are required to express either her joy in playing with her ball or her depression when it is broken. The double page with eight sequential vignettes depicting her loss is particularly effective, as is the final picture of contentment with the new ball. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2—Ever the minimalist, Raschka continues to experiment with what is essential to express the daily joys and tribulations of humans and animals. This wordless story features Daisy, a dog. The motion lines framing her tail on the first page indicate that a big red ball is her chief source of delight. Ever-changing, curvy gray brushstrokes, assisted by washes of watercolor, define her body and mood. Blue and yellow surround her ecstatic prance to the park with toy and owner. The story's climax involves another dog joining the game, but chomping too hard, deflating the beloved ball. A purple cloud moves in, and eight squares fill a spread, each surrounding the protagonist with an atmosphere progressing from yellow to lavender to brown as the canine processes what has occurred; a Rothko retrospective could not be more moving. Until that point, the action has occurred within varying page designs, many showing Daisy's shifting sentiments in four vertical or horizontal panels. Her attentive human's legs are glimpsed frequently, a sunny child whose warmth is transferred in comforting full view at bedtime. When another day dawns, the frisky dog's person proffers a blue surprise; the exuberance at having a ball and a friend is barely containable across two pages. Raschka's genius lies in capturing the essence of situations that are deeply felt by children. They know how easy it is to cause an accident and will feel great relief at absorbing a way to repair damage.—Wendy Lukehart, Washington DC Public Library

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780375858611
Publisher:
Random House Children's Books
Publication date:
05/10/2011
Pages:
32
Sales rank:
92,458
Product dimensions:
9.60(w) x 10.30(h) x 0.50(d)
Lexile:
NP (what's this?)
Age Range:
3 - 7 Years

What People are saying about this

From the Publisher

2012 Randolph Caldecott Medal Winner

Starred Review, School Library Journal, August 2011:
"Raschka’s genius lies in capturing the essence of situations that are deeply felt by children."

Starred Review, Horn Book, September/October 2011:
"a story that is noteworthy for both its artistry and its child appeal."

Starred Review, Kirkus Reviews, December 1, 2011:
“Rarely, perhaps never, has so steep an emotional arc been drawn with such utter, winning simplicity.”

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