Written by April Pulley Sayre; illustrated Steve Jenkins
Henry Holt, 2015, Ages 4-8
This book is from the viewpoint of a woodpecker. Children reading this book get to experience the everyday experiences of a woodpecker. The book presents many different kinds of woodpeckers. It discussed what woodpeckers eat and what they have to do in order to find food. It talks about how a woodpecker gets clean, and how they feed their kids. It also shows the reader how a woodpecker builds a home out of a tree for his/her family. It teachers children the different types of woodpeckers that exist and may live near them, and creates an understanding for children of what a woodpeckers life is like.
April Pulley Sayre uses a few different aspects in order to create a writing style for this book. She uses alliteration in the title of the book “Woodpecker Wham” in order to create a fun title that students will enjoy saying aloud. This also helps the reader to remember the title of the book because they have similar sounds. In addition to using alliteration in the title, Sayre also uses it throughout the picture book. In addition to alliteration, she uses rhyming throughout the book to grab the reader’s attention while informing them about woodpeckers. The rhyming throughout the book makes it fun for the reader to read, and the listener to hear.
In “Woodpecker Wham” there are illustrations on both pages. In order for the illustrations to stand out more without being over stimulating the illustrator places text only on one page, while putting illustrations on both. To make this book more physically appealing she bolds some words to make them stand out. For example, on the first page she bolds the words “chop, chip chop!” This stands out to the reader and the listener because the text is larger and darker. The black text against the bright colors of the illustrations helps them to stand out. The illustrations are nice visuals for children reading this book in order to better understand the text. The illustrator uses a two-page spread in order to show some of the illustrations. The two-page spread allows the reader to see the flow between the illustrations and the text and how they connect.
The book’s title caught my interest right away. The use of alliteration in the title made me want to open the book to see what it was about. The text is a fun story and is informational as well. The use of rhyming throughout the story keeps the reader intrigued. The bright colors and the illustrations are relevant to the text and make sense with the story. This helps younger readers to visual what the author is saying. The information of the book is also accurate. This gives the author credibility. Overall, based on the informational text, use of rhyming and alliteration, and the illustrations I believe this is a quality children’s picture book.
Reviewed by ML