Harold and the Purple Crayon: Meet Harold!

HarperCollins. (I Can Read!). Dec. 2022. 32p. pap. $4.99. ISBN 9780063283312.
PreS-Gr 3–Since its publication in 1955, Harold and the Purple Crayon by Crockett Johnson has been a children’s classic. In the story, Harold is a child with agency who learns to create the universe he needs by drawing it with his purple crayon. In this Level 1 reader, which features short sentences, familiar words, and simple concepts, the beauty of the language and the wonder of Harold’s feats have changed. Harold’s crayon is now magical—though nowhere in the original book is it ever called magical. Instead, readers are left to determine for themselves if it is magical, or if it is the creativity Harold holds within himself. This adaptation tends to explain rather than show, which changes the tenor of the story. The art is minimal as it is in the original, but the new illustrations are almost cartoony.
VERDICT This new beginning reader is tailor-made for children who want to start reading on their own and will fit nicely in the beginning reader sections of school and public libraries. Still, educators should share the original so children can be exposed to a truly lovely story.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing