Just about all kids love to paint. (Adults, too. As everyone knows, one of the best parts of hanging out with children is the chance to do those fun things like play with clay, paint and coloring books all over again.) And as soon as readers get a look at the bright, spattered endpapers in this colorful celebration of art, they're sure to be reaching for brushes and paint boxes.
Written to the tune of "It Ain't Gonna Rain No More," Karen Beaumont's lively, rhyming text is perfectly accompanied by David Catrow's hilarious illustrations. One day Mama catches the young narrator totally covered in paint, head to toe. Not only that, but the floors and walls of his room are splattered, too. So off to the bath he goes, and the painting supplies (now the only color on the page) are put away, in the top of the closet. "But there ain't no way . . . that I ain't gonna paint no more," chants the young artist, climbing on chair, trunk and basket to reach the top of the closet. Young readers will have a lot of fun predicting how the drips of red that spill out from the paint can he grabs might spread on the next page and they'll be right. First, the boy takes some red. And just where do you think that paint might land? You got it! Right on his head. Before you know it, he's covered head to toe once again, and slowly we end up just where we started with a riot of color splashed across the page, and everything else. Beaumont and Catrow, who teamed up previously for I Like Myself, have created an exuberant tale of a child who floods his world with color. Just be sure to have lots of paper on hand after reading this book or you just might end up with paint on your walls! Deborah Hopkinson's new picture book is Saving Strawberry Farm. She lives and picks strawberries in Oregon.