Maybe… by Chris Haughton, (Sept. 2021, Candlewick Press), $17.99, ISBN: 9781536220247
A mother monkey warns her three little ones against going to the mango tree. There are tigers lurking! As soon as Mom leaves, you know what happens. The three rationalize, rationalize, rationalize: “Hmm… maybe… maybe we could just look at the mangoes. That’d be OK. Right?” Naturally, looking at the mangoes leads to getting closer… closer… This hilarious story about pushing boundaries will make kids and grownups alike laugh out loud in recognition. The suspense keeps readers turning the pages and makes for a fantastically dramatic readaloud that will make your listeners gasp if you play it along with Haughton’s expert pacing and theatrical pauses. Chris Haughton’s digital artwork is bold and dramatic, with expressive monkeys whose blue and green coloring stand out against the brightly colored backgrounds. Sharp-eyed readers will see the murky outlines of the tigers lurking in the background, just like Mom said. Every single Chris Haughton book is a storytime hit for me; this joins the ranks.
The pig is soft, small, and perfect for cuddling while you read Maybe. My second grader and I have personally test-driven the book and plush together in a shared storytime, and we agree. The aviator cap is removable, and hat and plush are machine washable. This little sweetie will stand up to a lot of love, and will go nicely with a copy of Maybe, Charlotte’s Web, or maybe some Steampunk ABC?
The Flying Pig plush is available at Compendium’s website, or your preferred mass market retailer’s site. Snuggle up with this little one and dream about flying over obstacles into a bright new year!
Maybe, by Kobi Yamada/Illustrated by Gabriella Barouch, (Sept. 2019, Compendium), $17.95, ISBN: 978-1-946-87375-0
A girl and her sidekick, a small pig, take readers on an introspective journey in Maybe. Opening with the question, “Have you ever wondered why you are here?”, Kobi Yamada inspires and encourages listeners to think about what each and every one of us is here to accomplish – to invent something? to you build things?- and embrace everything life has to offer; everything we set out to do, from a place of love and the desire to be a force for good. Speak for those who cannot. Shine a light into dark places. Kobi Yamada’s words will fill readers with a sense of purpose; strengthening them against failure by acknowledging that it isn’t how one falls down, it’s how they rise. Gabrielle Barouch’s artwork explores fantastic, surreal landscapes with a hold in the corporeal world: releasing a birdcage filled with glowing butterflies into the night; watering flowers while standing in them.
Maybe is a lovely book to look at, and a book that’s filled with potential, just waiting to share it with others. Share this with your readers; read this to your class visits; let the kids know that, as Kobi Yamada says, “You already have everything it takes to do big things”.