What If...
What If...

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Annotation: A child who likes to draw and write stories imagines what would happen if there were no pencils, paper, or other tools for being creative.
Catalog Number: #182109
Format: Perma-Bound Edition from Publisher's Hardcover
All Formats: Search
Copyright Date: 2018
Edition Date: 2018
Illustrator: Curato, Mike,
Pages: 40
Availability: Available
ISBN: Publisher: 0-316-39096-8 Perma-Bound: 0-7804-4463-9
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-0-316-39096-5 Perma-Bound: 978-0-7804-4463-8
Dewey: E
LCCN: 2017030078
Dimensions: 26 cm.
Language: English
ALA Booklist
As a young artist sits down to consider her work, she wonders what would happen if her pencil disappeared? While imagining paper flowers, cranes, and unicorns, she knows she'd take the paper she's drawing on and fold it into art. And if there was no paper? She'd chisel the table she's writing on and chair she sits upon. Thus begins a mixed-media exploration of what it means to be an artist. The nameless protagonist, a stand-in for any youngster driven by creative tides, daydreams in explosive, bright colorscapes. Curato's collages, featuring ink, pencil, acrylics, and more, make beautiful backdrops that pop, contrast, and fill each spread with life. Even wood shavings shine in burnished, textured glory. What's more, Berger's inspiring message, drawn from her own experience of losing the tools to make her art during a natural disaster, uplifts and demonstrates the unstoppable spirit of creativity. As the final illustration showcases the variety of expressions (dance, digital art, scientific discovery), many young artists will come away connected and affirmed.
Horn Book
Louisiana Elefante's flighty, unstable grandmother abandons her at a motel, leaving behind a letter revealing that Louisiana is a foundling whom she rescued and raised. Louisiana (Raymie Nightingale) is a resilient and sympathetic character, and the juxtaposition of her down-to-earth observations with Granny's capriciousness lightens the narrative and allows for a good deal of humor. Overarching themes addressing forgiveness, love, friendship, acceptance, home, and family ring honest and true.
Kirkus Reviews
A testament to the power of an imaginative mind.A compulsively creative, unnamed, brown-skinned litt
Publishers Weekly
-With a pencil and paper, I write and draw art/ to create many stories that come from my heart.- But what if the young narrator of this story didn-t have a pencil? In ways that may remind readers of the lullaby -Hush Little Baby,- this brown-skinned, purple-haired girl is always thinking about her next move. No pencil? She-d make origami. No paper? She-d -chisel the table and then carve the chair- or create a wall-size sun by strategically peeling away paint. Ultimately, it-s her imagination-celebrated with a gatefold close-up of the girl deep in thought-and unfaltering determination to create that matter. -If I had nothing, but still had my mind,- writes Berger (Monster-s New Undies). -There-d always be stories to seek and find.- Curato-s collaged and found-object illustrations meet the creative challenges the text all but demands with moments of giddy inventiveness: a dragon created from fall leaves, a solar system rendered in dirt and marbles, and a snow scene made of marshmallows and sugar. Ages 4-8. Agent: Brenda Bowen, Sanford J. Greenburger Assoc. (Apr.)

Starred Review for Kirkus Reviews
A testament to the power of an imaginative mind.A compulsively creative, unnamed, brown-skinned little girl with purple hair wonders what she would do if the pencil she uses "to create…stories that come from my heart" disappeared. Turns out, it wouldn't matter. Art can take many forms. She can fold paper (origami), carve wood, tear wallpaper to create texture designs, and draw in the dirt. She can even craft art with light and darkness or singing and dancing. At the story's climax, her unencumbered imagination explodes beyond the page into a foldout spread, enabling readers both literally and figuratively to see into her fantasy life. While readers will find much to love in the exuberant rhyming verse, attending closely to the illustrations brings its own rewards given the fascinating combinations of mixed media Curato employs. For instance, an impressively colorful dragon is made up of different leaves that have been photographed in every color phase from green to deep red, including the dragon's breath (made from the brilliant orange leaves of a Japanese maple) and its nose and scales (created by the fan-shaped, butter-colored leaves of a gingko). Sugar cubes, flower petals, sand, paper bags, marbles, sequins, and lots more add to and compose these brilliant, fantasy-sparking illustrations.This extraordinary book will make it hard for any child reader to settle for the mundaneness of reality. (Picture book. 3-7)
Word Count: 229
Reading Level: 2.5
Interest Level: K-3
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 2.5 / points: 0.5 / quiz: 196593 / grade: Lower Grades

Creativity, the power of imagination, and the importance of self-expression are celebrated in this inspiring picture book written and illustrated by real-life best friends.

This girl is determined to express herself! If she can't draw her dreams, she'll sculpt or build, carve or collage. If she can't do that, she'll turn her world into a canvas. And if everything around her is taken away, she'll sing, dance, and dream...

Stunning mixed media illustrations, lyrical text, and a breathtaking gatefold conjure powerful magic in this heartfelt affirmation of art, imagination, and the resilience of the human spirit.

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