Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

Parents' Choice Awards : Books : Picture Books
What Happens On Wednesdays

What Happens On Wednesdays

Fall 2007 Picture Books
Ages: 3 - 6 yrs.
Author: Emily Jenkins
Illustrator: Lauren Castillo
ISBN: 978-0-374-38303-9
Hardcover Price: $16.00
This oddly elliptical observation of a young girl’s dawn-to-dusk day, told in the first person, seems to be an homage to ordinary: getting up, retrieving the morning newspaper, buying bagels for breakfast, going to school ("We have choice time, and circle, and choice time, and music, and playground time, and stories, and lunch."). Then it’s back home for more stories and a nap with mom, a trip to the pool, a stop at the library, and back again for bath and bed. Strangely, though breakfast and lunch are both shown in ample detail, dinner (while mentioned) is oddly invisible as if, perhaps, there were not quite enough pages left to complete the project. Whether preschoolers will relate to this flat day-in-the-life recitation of events or what they will make of the narrator’s repeated assertion, " is not a kissing day," is the question. First time illustrator Lauren Castillo’s lovingly detailed cityscapes and cozy interiors add loads of cartoon charm and go a long way toward transforming everyday into engaging.
Kristi Elle Jemtegaard   ©2007 Parents' Choice
Kristi Elle Jemtegaard is the Coordinator of Youth Services for the Arlington Public Library system. She has taught courses on children’s and young adult literature at the Catholic University of America and the University of Virginia. She has served on both the Newbery and Caldecott Award Committees of the American Library Association and has chaired the Notable Children’s Recordings Committee and the May Hill Arbuthnot Award Committee. She is a member and past president of the Children’s Book Guild of Washington DC and has chaired the Washington Post–Book Guild Nonfiction Award Committee. She is a founding member of Capitol Choices, an organization of professionals in the field of children’s literature in the greater Washington DC area. She regularly reviews children’s literature and audio productions for a variety of national publications.

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