"If you write FOR a particular market or FOR a particular editor you will often miss the mark. But if you write because your fingers have danced across the keyboard, because a character has tapped you on the shoulder, because a story has settled in your heart, then even if you never sell it you have done the work you were meant to do. And sometime, dear readers, real magic happens." Jane Yolen

2/20/15

The Extraordinary Mr. Qwerty: Perfect Picture Book Friday

Well, I'm back! Did you miss me? I've been pretty busy the past few weeks, and Susanna Leonard Hill's Perfect Picture Book Friday has been put on the back burner at my blog. But now it's back (and so am I :D) - with this delightful book that charmed my socks off.

Title: The Extraordinary Mr. Qwerty

Author/Illustrator: Karla Strambini

Publisher: Candlewick, 2014, fiction

Age Range: 5-8

Theme/Topics: imagination, fear, changing the world, confidence

First Sentence:There once was a man named Norman Qwerty...whose ideas were far from ordinary.

Synopsis: Mr. Qwerty worries that his ideas might seem strange, so he keeps them under his hat. But extraordinary ideas refuse to stay hidden for long.

Norman Qwerty is a man of many ideas, and none of them are the least bit ordinary. He’s quite certain that no one else thinks the way he does, and this makes him keep to himself. But when his ideas get too big to hold in, he builds the most extraordinary thing! Soon the beloved Mr. Qwerty is never alone (unless he wants to be), and the world will never be the same.

Resources: This book makes use of a couple idioms - thinking cap, keep under your hat. Talk about idioms with the kids - check out this site for a few - and some others here. You can also talk about Rube Goldberg machines (several of which are illustrated in this book)- and perhaps try to make something like one.

Why I LOVE it: I cannot stop thinking about this book. The illustrations are amazing (I think anyone of ANY age could spend an hour at least on each page examining the intricacies), the sparse text is wonderful, the message powerful and empowering. It is absolutely engaging, on so many levels. I think you have to see this one to believe it. And it's by a debut author/illustrator. :)

Hope you'll give this book a look - and check out the OTHER perfect picture books for today at Susanna's blog - and Susanna's ever-growing list of wonderful picture books
 
My heart is stirred by a noble theme as I recite my verses for the king; my tongue is the pen of a skillful writer. Psalm 45:1

18 comments:

  1. Oh, I really like your pick. I like the stories about innovators and where their ideas come from. Important for kids to know. Great focus on keeping your ideas under your hat -- better to share. Such a great pick today.

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    1. Thanks, Patricia! It is definitely a fun, engaging, and addicting read (and look!). :)

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  2. Well, you sold me! Sounds like an awesome tale!! Thanks!

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    1. Really is - hope you (and your mama) enjoy it!

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  3. Wow! The cover illustration makes me want to see more! And I think my son would love to read this one, too! Thanks for featuring!

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    1. The illustrations are TOTALLY engaging, Jilanne - I'm sure your son WOULD love it! Thanks for stopping by!

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  4. This looks fantastic! I love how the cover is black-and-white with highlights of red! I love reading picture books that stay with me long after I've read them. Thank you for the recommendation!

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    1. You are so welcome - I don't think I can say enough about this one. :)

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    1. Thanks, Julie :D - it is - extraordinary, in fact. :)

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  6. This is such a fun book - because of the silly engineering.... and wild imagination.

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    1. Exactly, Sue. :) Thanks for stopping by!

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  7. Intriguing first sentence and cover! I'm going to look for this!

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    1. Hope you can find it, Andrea. It's most definitely a gem. Thanks for stopping by!

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  8. This sounds so terrific, Joanne! I've seen it around, but haven't had a chance to read it yet. Looking forward to it! Thanks so much for adding it to our list :)

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    1. I'm sure you'll love it, Susanna! You're welcome - and thanks for the encouragement!

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  9. I haven't heard of this one. I hope my library has this one. When the snow melts a little, I should be able to make a library run.

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    1. If I waited for the snow to melt, I'd probably only go to the library four or five months of the year LOL. I hope you CAN pick it up - and that you enjoy it. Thanks for stopping by, Stacy!

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Thanks for stopping by. I would love to hear your thoughts - please share them!


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