Do you have a plan for your day, but something interrupts? Are you ever in the middle of telling a really good joke when someone interrupts with the punch line? If anyone interrupts you when you read the following bedtime story, you'll identify with Papa. Maybe you ARE Papa.
INTERRUPTING CHICKEN by David Ezra Stein, Candlewick Press, 2010
Hansel and Gretel, Little Red Riding Hood, Chicken Little. Ever tell them to your kids as bedtime stories? Little Red Chicken’s Papa has a full repertoire of fairy tales, but he’s told them so often that now when he gets to the scary part, Little Red Chicken rushes in and warns the characters away from the danger they face.
Papa has had enough. He vows not to tell any more stories until Little Red Chicken promises not to interrupt. The poor little chick just can’t help it. How the two resolve this threat to bedtime will have you smiling when you fall asleep tonight.
I listened to an 8 year old read this picture book to her 5 year old brother. What did they like best, the pictures or the story? They both turned every page again, thinking this one through.
"All the stories," the older reader said. Not just the big story about the father and son, but the beginning of the fairy tales. She didn't mind that the author left it to her to finish telling the well known but interrupted tales. After all, (spoiler alert!)Little Red Chicken becomes the story teller before the book ends.
Her brother liked the pictures and he liked the story, but he liked them best "together."
Author/illustrator Stein has many books to his credit. Leaves won an Ezra Jack Keats New Writer Award. It's easy to see why his books are young readers' favorites.
Feathers aside, who are you in this book, Papa or the child? When you know trouble awaits on the other side of the door in a TV re-run, do you speak up: "Don't open that door. Run!"