Wednesday, October 11, 2023

Today's read... The Roll-Away Pumpkin by Junia Wonders

Today's read is not a new release, but rather has garnished quite a bit of attention since it hit the shelves a few years ago. The cover caught my attention...maybe, because of the big, beautiful pumpkin? It just seems so perfect for October.

by Junia Wonders
Illustrated by Daniela Volpari
Picture Book
36 pages
ages 4 to 8

Honorable Mention 2022 PURPLE DRAGONFLY BOOK AWARD Early Readers
Honorable Mention 2022 PURPLE DRAGONFLY BOOK AWARD Best Illustrations
Honorable Mention 2022 PURPLE DRAGONFLY BOOK AWARD Holiday

A wonderful & whimsical autumn tale! 

“Marla Little’s pumpkin is rolling away! Can she catch it before it’s gone forever? Readers both young and young at heart will delight in this lovely, whimsical tale.“ –BookBub

Multi-award-winning author and illustrator team delight young readers with a rollicking sequencing story.

When a large pumpkin gets away from its young owner, Marla, an amusing and lighthearted pursuit ensues. As it rolls down country roads, through a farm’s haystacks, past a milkman and his cart, over a stone bridge, through a city’s bistro, and past a butcher shop, readers will enjoy as each subsequent person joins in the young girl’s chase after the runaway, rollaway pumpkin, making for a silly procession that gets even sillier when the group encounters a marching parade. A pleasing ending has the ever-growing group enjoying a cauldron of pumpkin soup.

With stunning illustrations in beautiful muted earthy tones, many small details make each spread a delight in poring over—a dog with little sausages in its mouth, street signs that point “this way” and “that way”, a tiny windmill in the distance, leaves fluttering down on the country road, fresh baguettes stacked up in the baker’s wagon. A wonderfully lilting text is beautifully typeset in a fun and whimsical way, curving along the streets and alleys. A repeated refrain throughout the story adds a fun opportunity for young readers to chant along.

A short and simple story, The Roll-Away Pumpkin is a perfect read-aloud for families and educators of young children, while its highlighted keywords, repetitive language, and predictive nature make it ideal for beginner readers.

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Gorgeous illustrations invite into every scene, but then, this is a read to simply sink into and enjoy.

Marla's pumpkin has slipped from her grip and is rolling away! If it was a small pumpkin, this wouldn't be a problem, but Marla's pumpkin happens to be huge. She's determined to catch it before disaster strikes, but this pumpkin isn't easily stopped.

There's tons of goodness to this picture book. First off, the illustrations draw into every scene with a style, which is distinct, entertaining and simply well done. The colors remind of Fall, and the lines invite to dreaming. Of course, humor thrives, too, as an exciting and fun chase keeps those pages turning.

The tale makes a nice read-aloud, especially for groups, since it repeats a silly, little rhyme which invites listeners to join in. The vocabulary is great even for younger audiences, and the tale packs enough tension to have readers wondering what will happen next. It's a cute read for the season, which is simple and yet so fun. It's worth a peek for classrooms, libraries and even for those book collections at home. 

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