Friday, December 2, 2016

Hap-Pea All Year, Written and Illustrated by Keith Baker (2016)

Hap-Pea All Year is a charming and delightful book for very young readers.  Following his previous books about peas (which took the peas through letters, numbers and colors), writer and illustrator Keith Baker now provides a snappy walk through the year, blithely illustrated with hap-pea peas.

Each of the 12 months is showcased in a two-paged, double-spread illustration, showing how the peas enjoy each month.  There’s snow in January, Valentines in February, and camping out under summer skies in July.  The simple paintings are fecund – crammed with detail and amusing incident, each with little ‘pocket’ stories of isolated action.

Hap-Pea All Year is for young readers (under eight), but parents will not find it a slog.  In fact, adults will get nearly as much fun pointing to the various elements of each painting, and helping underscore the various delights that can be found in each month.

Hap-Pea All Year is a book of beguiling sweetness and delicious simplicity.  It comes highly recommend to anyone with young children, and should inspire new readers to pick up Keith Baker’s earlier titles. 

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