I know I have said this before, but I am so glad that libraries exist. I recently borrowed the Kindle version of The Day the Crayons Quit and I am so happy that I did not spend the ten plus dollars required to own this book. I am in the minority with my opinion and I am so confused as to why. The book has a five-star average rating on Amazon by 3,722 customers. Only two percent of all those reviews are for one star while a whopping eighty-six percent of customers gave it five stars. My review here is going to be kind of ironic because the book is all about complaining and that is what this review is: one big complaint.
The book starts off fine. Duncan opens his crayon box one morning and finds that his Crayons are all gone and there are letters left in their place. It sounds creative and fun. An epistolary for children. Maybe filled with fun and fond tales of the past or their current exploits? Nope.
The first page is the last place I am onboard with the creativity. The rest of the book, page after page, we read about a crayon’s complaints. Every crayon in the book complains except for green and most of the complaints center around feeling overused or underused. The common theme though is they all decided that the best way to deal with their problem was to run away and write a letter about it. Is that a good message to send to children?
If you have a problem with something don’t bring it up until you are completely frustrated to the point that you just suddenly quit. That type of attitude is not healthy for anyone. How about, if you are upset its okay to run away if you leave a note? These crayons are not good role models. They just abandoned poor Duncan.
A better book would have been The Day the Crayons Gave Two Weeks Notice or The Day the Crayons Talked About What Bothered Them.
If the crayons had just voiced their concerns to Duncan as they had them he could have accommodated them and helped them out. Instead, the poor boy couldn’t color because his crayons went on strike. Was Duncan ignoring their rumblings so leaving him became the only option?
After reading this book, are there any kids that are now scared of mistreating their crayons for fear of them leaving? Do kids not use certain colors because they don’t want them to work too hard? Seems like a sure way to stifle creativity.
Again, I know I am in the minority here but I really don’t understand the charm. Let’s praise a book about quitting…