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DOODLEDAY by Ross Collins


by Ross Collins & illustrated by Ross Collins

Age Range: 4 - 6

Pub Date: May 1st, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-8075-1683-6
Publisher: Whitman

Mom departs for the store with emphatic instructions that Harvey mustn’t draw because today is “Doodleday,” but Harvey doesn’t obey this baffling edict. He has no idea what Doodleday is, but surely a sketch of a fly “couldn’t hurt a fly,” right? He frowns in concentration and, using blue pencil on white paper, produces a nice, fat, hairy fly—which immediately appears, alive and exponentially larger, “destroying the kitchen.” Worried, Harvey renders a spider in purple, which also bursts into life—and snares Harvey’s dad in its web. Harvey draws a bird next, then a giant squid, hoping each time that the new creature will devour the next-smallest and stop the chaos. His massive, animated artwork wreaks havoc on the neighborhood until Mom returns and draws the only thing that can contain them: Mom herself. Sketched-Mom forces the creatures back into the pad of paper, and peace is restored. Collins uses fine lines, perspective and plenty of color in portraying Harvey and the backgrounds, but the drawings-come-alive grow only in size, not detail: Each resembles a child’s artwork, with grainy, crayon-textured outlines on white paper that stays flat and non-transparent. The disparate visual styles look fascinating together and distract from the niggling misnomer of a title; Harvey’s work is too deliberate to be called doodling. A nifty heir to Harold and the Purple Crayon. (Picture book. 4-6)