Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Two charming friends, a white rabbit and a pink pig, are painting different pictures. Each wishes he were like the other. The rabbit would like to be pink, while the pig would choose "the palest shade of white." So, each paints himself the wished-for color. The rabbit adds a curl of lemon rind for his desired curly tail, while the pig dons a puff of cotton for his. Each chooses to change ears and alter nose or modify toes. Soon, they look at each other's works. They laugh, noting "YOU look funny!" and "You look like ME!" Ultimately, they decide "I like it better when you are you!" and "That's why we love each other." Produced with sketchy outlines in mixed media, each appears on his own small page, the rabbit accompanied by a blue butterfly and the pig by an active green frog. A subtle blue line defines this quartet with the necessary colors added to the action. The sweet story is softened in comic ways, including the froggy intrusions. There is a lighthearted lesson to be found on these pages. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
PreS-K—A rabbit and a pig decide they want to trade places with one another, so they use art supplies and other items at hand to transform themselves accordingly. The layout and text will help audiences keep track of who's who as the changes occur. The rabbit is always on the left side of the spread, and the pig, on the right. Each character also speaks in a distinctive typeface. These design elements underscore the story's theme that differences are what make us unique and special. Children will identify with the animals' playful, imaginative antics. For example, the rabbit covers the tips of its long ears with socks so she will resemble the pig. Meanwhile, the pig puts a pair of tights on its head so it can have long, floppy ears. Fans of dress up and creative play, especially, will relate to the story. Moreover, the mixed-media artwork evokes children's drawings and paintings. Black lines around the figures resemble crayon strokes. Broad brushstrokes also recall the vigorous efforts of young artists. Text and illustrations effectively collaborate to create a cozy, cheerful book. A welcome addition with broad appeal.—Mary Landrum, Lexington Public Library, KY
Not to be confused with another, equally pleasing 2009 book of the same name, by Janet A. Holmes and illustrated by Judith Rossell, this tale of two friends goes ear-to-ear and tail-to-tail between a rabbit and a pig. Standing side by side, each animal is painting a picture and turns to the other, saying: "I wish I were just like you. / My tail would be as curly as a lemon twist. / My tail would be as fluffy as cotton candy." Each spread depicts the silly trade-offs, with the speaker indicated by distinct shifts in typeface, until a mud puddle makes them realize that they really like their differences, which make them even better friends. The spare text is complemented by nuanced, mixed-media illustrations in a soft palette set against a white backdrop, while the loose, energetic lines enact the antics. The banter of the first-person dialogue is childlike and exuberant and will have kids smiling while subtly reinforcing individuality. Simply charming. (Picture book. 3-5)
From the Publisher
The banter of the first-person dialogue is childlike and exuberant and will have kids smiling while subtly reinforcing individuality. Simply charming.
Text and illustrations effectively collaborate to create a cozy, cheerful book. A welcome addition with broad appeal.