For Winner’s Wednesday, I chose the 2018 Geisel Honor Award winning book, My Kite Is Stuck! And Other Stories, written and illustrated by Salina Yoon. This book is a sequel to her previous book, Duck, Duck, Porcupine!, which first introduces the three lovely characters, Big Duck, Little Duck, and Porcupine to the readers.
My Kite Is Stuck! And Other Stories consists of three short stories:
In the first story, “My Kite Is Stuck!”, Big Duck’s kite gets stuck in the tree, and her friend Porcupine and her little brother Little Duck try to help Big Duck get her kite back. After many failed attempts, Little Duck comes to the rescue by bringing a ladder.
In the second short story, “A New Friend”, Porcupine finds a new bee friend. Big Duck gets jealous and struggles to accept Porcupine’s new friendship, but soon finds herself a new ladybug friend. Little Duck meets a spider, but isn’t so sure if he and spider are friends.
In the third short story, “Best Lemonade Stand”, Big Duck and Porcupine spend time making and decorating their own lemonade stand, only to realize that they forgot the most important part: the lemonade itself! Little Duck once again saves the day by making and delivering the lemonade to the customers.
My Kite Is Stuck! And Other Stories has bold, yet simple illustrations and text, with black outlines and vivid colors. The characters’ faces are expressive, and the illustrations have soft, crayon-like textures to them. The text is comprised of simple sentences with sight words and high-frequency words, which naturally expose a rich array of words to children who are reading this book. The book also contains words, such as “tap! tap!”, “brush! brush!”, “squeeze! squeeze!”, as part of the illustration that indicate the actions of characters. These words serve as appropriate supplements to reading comprehension.
In addition to the appealing illustrations, the book is full of humor, and relays important messages about the different aspects and dynamics of friendship. The book demonstrates the characters’ willingness to help each other, the importance of cooperation in solving problems, the different emotions, such as jealousy and discontent, that young readers might experience in their own lives, and how friends complement each others’ mistakes and shortcomings.
Overall, this book is a fabulous book for caregivers to read with children who cannot read yet, beginner readers who might have just started reading, and even adults who might want to momentarily relive their childhood memories of friendship.