Peter's Chair board book

Overview

Peter, the hero of many of Ezra Jack Keats' award-winning books, is upset when his parents paint his old baby furniture pink for his new little sister. There's one thing they haven't painted yet, though: his little blue chair. He'll do whatever it takes to save it—even run away! Now this perennial favorite is accessible to even the youngest child in a durable board book edition, with reinforced pages, a handy trim size, and safe, rounded corners.

When Peter ...

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Overview

Peter, the hero of many of Ezra Jack Keats' award-winning books, is upset when his parents paint his old baby furniture pink for his new little sister. There's one thing they haven't painted yet, though: his little blue chair. He'll do whatever it takes to save it—even run away! Now this perennial favorite is accessible to even the youngest child in a durable board book edition, with reinforced pages, a handy trim size, and safe, rounded corners.

When Peter discovers his blue furniture is being painted pink for a new baby sister, he rescues the last unpainted item, a chair, and runs away.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Sharon Salluzzo
Not only does Peter have to be quiet now that there is a new baby at his house but his crib and his high chair are now pink. When he sees that his favorite little chair has not been painted yet, Peter takes the chair along with his toy crocodile, his favorite picture of himself as a baby, and his dog, Willie, and runs away. He sets up all the items right in front of his house. When he attempts to sit in the chair Peter discovers he is now too big. While sitting in a "grown-up" chair to eat the special lunch his mother has made Peter suggests to his father that they paint the chair pink for his new sister, Susie. The pacing, carefully selected words for the text, the experience of adjusting to a new baby, and the illustrations are as fresh today as when the book was first printed forty years ago. The board book edition of this classic is especially nice to have available for toddlers who have a new sibling in the house.
Children's Literature - Judith Gravitz
Peter is not pleased by the arrival of his new baby sister. Not only does she seem to infringe upon his noisy playtime, but his parents also have preempted his baby furniture for her use. And worse yet, they have painted it pink! When his favorite chair seems to be the next painting subject, Peter acts. Taking his chair, food and other beloved items, Peter runs away... to the front stoop. As Peter goes to sit down in his baby chair to think, he begins to understand what it means to be a big brother. This timeless story, which is approaching its 30th anniversary (1997), is as charming and insightful as ever. The audiocassette in this tape/book package has one side just for listening; the other side has page cues to use in conjunction with the book.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780670061907
  • Publisher: Viking Juvenile
  • Publication date: 9/21/2006
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 190,845
  • Age range: 2 years
  • Product dimensions: 6.11 (w) x 5.30 (h) x 0.62 (d)

Meet the Author

Ezra Jack Keats

Ezra Jack Keats (1916–1983) is the Caldecott Medal winning author of The Snowy Day, which broke ground in 1962 as one of the first picture books for young children to portray a realistic, multi-cultural urban setting. Since its initial publication, The Snowy Day has come to be regarded as both a children’s classic and one of the most important picture books ever written/illustrated. Ezra Jack Keats’ legacy lives on in the popularity of his most famous character, Peter—the star of The Snowy Day, Whistle for Willie, Peter's Chair, A Letter to Amy, Goggles, and others. Visit the Ezra Jack Keats Foundation online at www.ezra-jack-keats.org

Biography

When Ezra Jack Keats began creating children's books in the 1960s, he noticed something missing from the genre and chose to correct it.

Keats had already illustrated several kids' books and was starting his second when he made a simple but important decision: The main character would be black. "None of the manuscripts I'd been illustrating featured any black kids-except for token blacks in the background," Keats later wrote. "My book would have him there simply because he should have been there all along."

The character, Peter, debuted in The Snowy Day, which won a Caldecott Medal. Perhaps the strongest statement Keats made about race at the time was making ethnicity (his first book's protagonist was a Puerto Rican boy) completely incidental to the story. The books' themes are universal: In the case of Snowy Day, a boy discovers the joy of angel-making, sledding, and all the other things kids do on a free winter day.

The child of immigrants, Keats grew up in a Jewish neighborhood in Brooklyn, in relative poverty. Although his gifts with pencil and paint were obvious from a young age, his father, a waiter, discouraged his artistic ambitions, fearing it would be too hard for his son to make a living. When he brought home tubes of paint for Ezra, he would tell the boy that hard-up artist customers had swapped their paint for soup. When his father died, however, Keats discovered a stash of newspaper clippings: his father had carefully saved the notices of all of Ezra's artistic prizes and achievements.

Once established as a creator of children's books, Keats developed a stable of characters -- including the adventurous Peter, a shy boy named Louie, and a sympathetic girl named Amy -- who often resurfaced over the author's twenty-odd years of storymaking. Often taking place in urban settings and illustrated in Keats's hallmark gouache and collage style, the stories chronicle the discoveries, pleasures, and fears of being a kid: coping with a new sibling, befriending a previously scary blind neighbor, entering a pet show, or finding a pair of goggles.

Keats tackled the topic of single parenthood in Louie's Search, where Louie accidentally discovers a husband for his mom. Even when characters behave oddly or badly (as in the case of Louie's new dad, who initially accuses the boy of stealing from his junk truck), their innate goodness is always revealed. Each title exemplifies Keats's faith in people.

With his muted, evocative images and his commitment towards diversity, Keats made children's literature vivid and human in a way it had never been before.

Good To Know

In the late 1930s, Keats worked as a mural painter on WPA projects. He entered the Army in 1943, where he designed camouflage patterns.

Later, Keats created five greeting cards about peace for UNICEF's first greeting card season ... A million cards were sold that year.

The de Grummond Children's Literature Collection at the University of Southern Mississippi is the sole repository for Ezra Jack Keats's archives.

A life-size bronze statue of Peter, Willie, and Peter's chair sits in Imagination Playground in Brooklyn's Prospect Park.

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    1. Also Known As:
      Jacob Ezra Katz (birth name)
    1. Date of Birth:
      March 11, 1916
    2. Place of Birth:
      Brooklyn, New York
    1. Date of Death:
      May 6, 1983
    2. Place of Death:
      New York, New York

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 17, 2009

    Perfect gift for a new big sister or brother

    I read about this book from a magazine years ago and since then give it as a new big sister/brother book. It teaches a great lesson about sharing and preparing for the baby.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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