Welcome to a special post featuring a review and giveaway for the lovely picture book Queenie Quail Can’t Keep Up, a collaboration from the Canadian duo of author Jane Whittingham and illustrator Emma Pederson! The author and Pajama Press are very kindly offering one Canadian reader a chance to win a copy of Queenie Quail Can’t Keep Up– so read on for all giveaway information after my thoughts on the book!
No matter how hard she tries, little Queenie Quail can’t keep up with her Mama and her Papa and her nine bobbing, tapping siblings. “Hurry, hurry, hurry!” they exclaim as Queenie lags behind. But how can Queenie hurry when there are so many interesting things to look at? One day when she stops to admire a fascinating feather, a flash of orange catches Queenie’s eye. Spotting danger among the greenery, Queenie springs into action, hurry, hurry, hurrying to warn her family just in the nick of time.
From Jane Whittingham, the celebrated author of Wild One and A Good Day for Ducks, Queenie Quail Can’t Keep Up is a story about the value of slowing down to take notice of the world around us. Whittingham’s bouncy prose is filled with lovely wordplay and musicality, pairing perfectly with debut illustrator Emma Pedersen’s whimsical illustrations in this tale that young readers will identify with and ask for again and again.
“But how could Queenie Quail ever keep up when there were pink blossoms and green grass, shiny stones and fuzzy caterpillars, buzzy bumblebees and wiggly worms?
No matter how hard she tried, Queenie Quail just couldn’t keep up.”
Queenie Quail is the littlest quail among her nine sisters and brothers and always in a hurry to “join the end of the bobbing, tapping line” of her family. For Queenie, the world is a delicious delight- the sounds! the textures! the colours! the creatures!- everything around her and every experience is a joy…but one that leads to her lagging behind or off the path away from her Mama Quail, Papa Quail and her brothers and sisters. Her parents encourage her to hurry, hurry and keep up, reminding her that “it is what we quails do”, and Queenie Quail does try her best- for a short while at least! But before long, Queenie Quail is back to pausing, investigating, and admiring the splendid world around her. What begins as a perceived hindrance by her family, however, soon becomes recognized as a major strength, skill, and resource as Queenie Quail’s constant notice of the world around her leads to an important discovery and a brave turn. Queenie Quail Can’t Keep Up is great, bouyant and chirpy reading fun, filled with energy, rhythm, repetition and marvelous artwork. Emma Pedersen’s gouache illustrations are absolutely glorious and inviting (and deeply adorable), while readers familiar with Jane Whittingham’s work in A Good Day for Ducks and Wild One will recognize that the author (also a librarian!) approaches storytelling with an audience in mind, leading to stories tailor-made for reading aloud.
Overall, a beautifully cozy, heartwarming read that contains a just-right-for-the-story moment of excitement. While fresh and current, there is also something so very wonderfully nostalgic in the storytelling and visual appeal of Queenie Quail Can’t Keep Up. My experience of reading this picture book made me think back to when I used to be read (or read) old favourites such as The Story of Ferdinand, No Roses for Harry, or Make Way for Ducklings (also noted by Kirkus Reviews I can see!), or now when I read stories such as Luis and Tabitha, Thank You and Good Night, or The Bunny Band – stories that bring about this sunshine-feeling of happy memories. Readers on the lookout for a lovely new storytime read aloud to try for preschool ages and up, or for a new cuddly story to share, Queenie Quail Can’t Keep Up is one to reach for!
Giveaway is open to Canadian residents ages 18 and above. One winner will receive one copy of Jane Whittingham and Emma Pedersen’s picture book Queenie Quail Can’t Keep Up. The giveaway will be open from March 10, 2019 to March 24, 2019. The winning entry will be randomly drawn via Rafflecopter, and the winner will have 48 hours to get in touch with me via email, Twitter, or Facebook confirming their Canadian mailing address, or another entry will be drawn.
Click here to enter the giveaway!
A copy of this title was received courtesy of Pajama Press in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and comments are my own. Giveaway fulfilled courtesy of Jane Whittingham and Pajama Press.