What Color Is Caesar?

Overview

One dog’s quest for self-definition is anything but black and white in this delightfully droll, enlightening tale by an acclaimed former poet laureate.

Caesar is a large white dog with a great many black spots. Or is he a large black dog with even more white spots? That’s the trouble: he doesn’t know which, and though nobody in the family seems to care, he won’t rest until he uncovers the truth. So off he traipses, beseeching one animal after another to find out what color he ...

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Overview

One dog’s quest for self-definition is anything but black and white in this delightfully droll, enlightening tale by an acclaimed former poet laureate.

Caesar is a large white dog with a great many black spots. Or is he a large black dog with even more white spots? That’s the trouble: he doesn’t know which, and though nobody in the family seems to care, he won’t rest until he uncovers the truth. So off he traipses, beseeching one animal after another to find out what color he is, basically. From celebrated poet Maxine Kumin comes a doggedly quizzical hero, brought comically to life by Alison Friend’s expressive watercolors — a lovable picture-book character who ultimately learns that it’s not what’s on the outside that counts.

Caesar doesn't know if he is a white dog with black spots or a black dog with white spots.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Caesar, a large dog, worries about whether he is white with black spots or black with white spots. He sets out and finds others who look similar. He asks a black and white cow what color she is, but she has a useless answer, as does a black and white pony. At a circus he encounters a zebra, who says that under the skin he is yellow "as the sun of Africa." The zebra sends him to the guru of the circus for an answer to what he is, "basically." The guru says that deep down he is whatever color he wants to be. Searching himself, Caesar sees all colors. The guru says that means he is a rainbow. Caesar runs happily home for his dinner. The lengthy, somewhat philosophical but humorous text is visualized in naturalistic gouache paintings of the animals, some in sequential vignettes, but mainly in full-page scenes dominated but the animals. The guru is a comic character. The front endpapers show a room with a framed painting of Caesar. In the rear, the framed picture includes the guru; the reader must puzzle why. Also note the contrast between jacket and cover. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780763634322
  • Publisher: Candlewick Press
  • Publication date: 2/9/2010
  • Pages: 56
  • Age range: 2 - 5 Years
  • Product dimensions: 10.80 (w) x 9.50 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Maxine Kumin is a Pulitzer Prize-winning poet who has served as both the Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress (a post later renamed the Poet Laureate of the United States) and the Poet Laureate of New Hampshire. In addition to her numerous books of poetry, she has also written novels, essays, and beloved children’s books. She lives in Warner, New Hampshire.

Alison Friend creates sweet and funny watercolors of animals that have been featured on greeting and holiday cards. This is her first picture book. She lives in South Yorkshire, England.

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 20, 2010

    CUTE LITTLE CAESAR

    Who wouldn't love "Caesar" he is a adorable BARKER :O))
    Nice illustrations and story.
    Children would enjoy this book because it is a story
    about a DOG !!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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