This book is wonderful on so many levels:
- Its theme of imagination -- Harold's wild imagination draws us into his magical adventure
- How it surprises and delights with the random creatures and objects that Harold draws to help him out of sometimes sticky situations (pun intended re: pie scene)
- The likable character of Harold, who has mad reasoning skills, yet is still believable as a 4-year old
- Crockett Johnson's subtle wordplay that I never caught as a child, but tickled me when I recognized it as an adult
Also impressive is its staying power -- enough to inspire numerous adaptions including an HBO series, an episode of The Simpsons, and an iPad app -- not to mention Harold Underdown's popular kidlit resource website, "The Purple Crayon". Did Crockett Johnson ever imagine how far reaching his little book would be?
I'd read Harold and the Purple Crayon as a child, and enjoyed it; but as an adult and a budding picture book writer, I would call it the book that has influenced my picture book writing the most.
What picture book(s) has influenced or inspired you?