Blue Chameleon
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Blue Chameleon

5.0 1
by Emily Gravett
     
 

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Chameleon can turn himself into anything and appear to fit in anywhere, but it seems that neither the swirly snail, the green grasshopper nor the striped sock want to be friends. Will he ever find someone to talk to? Someone just like him?

With a subtle and witty interplay between words and illustrations this introduction to colors and shapes (and chameleons!)

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Overview

Chameleon can turn himself into anything and appear to fit in anywhere, but it seems that neither the swirly snail, the green grasshopper nor the striped sock want to be friends. Will he ever find someone to talk to? Someone just like him?

With a subtle and witty interplay between words and illustrations this introduction to colors and shapes (and chameleons!) is sure to delight kids of all ages.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In this small-scale but lively diversion, Greenaway Medalist Gravett (Little Mouse's Big Book of Fears) explores the possibilities of chameleon friendship—or even love. "I'm lonely," a blue chameleon says, knobby elbows scrunched sadly on knobby knees. If a chameleon is blue, whom does he woo? "Hi," says the chameleon on the left-hand page to a banana on the right; he's curved his body and changed his skin to match the banana. "Hello Hello Hello," he says to an unimpressed pink cockatoo, turning pink and angling his arms to duplicate her wings. A "swirly" snail, a brown boot, a "stripy" sock (the book also functions as a light primer on colors and patterns)—the chameleon can make himself look like anything. He can even turn white and disappear into the page (a white varnished outline shows him lying along the foot of the spread). Worry not: a happy ending is in store. As always, Gravett's art charms; colored pencil lines on rough paper give the pages warmth, and the chameleon's "disguises" repay attention as readers spot similarities to and differences from the things the chameleon mimics. Ages 2–6. (Mar.)
From the Publisher
"As always, Gravett's art charms; colored pencil lines on rough paper give the pages warmth, and the chameleon's "disguises" repay attention as readers spot similarities to and differences from the things the chameleon mimics."—Publishers Weekly

"This elaboration of the simplest of concepts suggests multiple uses, from exploring the moods in the spare, expressive art to recapturing the events, and the minimal dialogue, in dramatic play."—The Horn Book

"Both chameleons and friendship populate children's picture books liberally, but this one's well worth adding to the shelf."—Kirkus Reviews

"A clever concept book with emotional punch and magnificent art is a rare treat. In Gravett’s latest triumph, readers meet a despondent chameleon...While the simple text is appropriate for toddlers, the book is clever enough for older children to enjoy. Gravett’s design and art are exceptional."—School Library Journal

Children's Literature - Susan Treadway M.Ed.
Delightfully illustrated to showcase a lonely chameleon who has a bigger heart than most, the main character is quite diligent about seeking a good friend. However, his idea of friendship may seem at odds with those he meets. Colors and shapes combine with primarily single word text on big, bold pages to bring his most fascinating journey to very young children. This little guy has a great personality, even in despair. Yes, he is blue on the inside as well as on the outside. He speaks to each possible friend, but nothing works. He tries changing physical characteristics to conform to another creature or inanimate object in hopes of securing friendship. Nothing works. There are insects, animals, fish, birds, and common things. Chameleon changes colors. Chameleon changes configurations. Chameleon tries anything and everything. Youngsters will find symmetry when comparing and contrasting pairs of images, but also enough differences to recognize him. On a double page spread near the end of the book there is a textured white chameleon on a plain white page. Readers can feel him and may need to tip the book to see a marvelous shiny outline of his body and tail. As an engaging read-aloud with meaningful illustrations, children clearly follow Chameleon's courageous efforts with similar emotions. In the end he is no longer blue. Having found a perfectly colorful new friend, both chameleons display lively patterns in bright colors while celebrating a boisterous dance together. Yes, being different is wonderful in a diverse world. Learning basic concepts with this book is great fun. However, finding someone to like you is an important discovery for our very youngest boys and girls. Incorporating humor, appropriate language and award-winning style, this story reaches even a wider audience with a big heart. Reviewer: Susan Treadway, M.Ed.
School Library Journal
PreS-K—A clever concept book with emotional punch and magnificent art is a rare treat. In Gravett's latest triumph, readers meet a despondent chameleon on the front endpapers. He searches for a companion, transforming himself to mirror the objects he finds: a yellow banana, a pink cockatoo, a swirly snail. Each spread sports only two words, plus the chameleon's speech bubble. "Howdy," he says to the cowboy boot. For "Gold fish," he contorts his body into a fishy shape, stares plaintively at the fish across the page, and speaks in empty air bubbles. No one will return his greeting, and finally he crawls onto a gray rock and gives up. The next page is completely white, save for the embossed outline of the chameleon. But what's that reaching from the next page and tapping the chameleon on the tail? The page turn reveals a new friend, and the two chameleons—now rainbow hued from joy—walk off the endpapers together. Libraries may choose to remove the dust jacket rather than tape over the story's ending. While the simple text is appropriate for toddlers, the book is clever enough for older children to enjoy. Gravett's design and art are exceptional, from the masterful use of white space down to the concrete poem of a chameleon created with the copyright and publication information.—Suzanne Myers Harold, Multnomah County Library System, Portland, OR

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781442419582
Publisher:
Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
Publication date:
03/08/2011
Pages:
32
Sales rank:
675,431
Product dimensions:
9.90(w) x 10.00(h) x 0.50(d)
Age Range:
2 - 6 Years

Meet the Author

Emily Gravett is the author of many critically acclaimed books, including the Kate Greenaway Award–winning Wolves and Little Mouse’s Big Book of Fears. She is also the author and illustrator of Again! (shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Award), Wolf Won’t Bite!, Blue Chameleon, The Rabbit Problem, Dogs, Spells, The Odd Egg, Monkey and Me, Orange Pear Apple Bear, and Meerkat Mail. She lives in Brighton, England, with her family. Visit her at EmilyGravett.com.

Emily Gravett is the author of many critically acclaimed books, including the Kate Greenaway Award–winning Wolves and Little Mouse’s Big Book of Fears. She is also the author and illustrator of Again! (shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Award), Wolf Won’t Bite!, Blue Chameleon, The Rabbit Problem, Dogs, Spells, The Odd Egg, Monkey and Me, Orange Pear Apple Bear, and Meerkat Mail. She lives in Brighton, England, with her family. Visit her at EmilyGravett.com.

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