Kirkus Reviews QR Code
NOT IN THE HOUSE, NEWTON! by Judith Heide Gilliland


by Judith Heide Gilliland & illustrated by Elizabeth Sayles

Pub Date: Oct. 23rd, 1995
ISBN: 0-395-61195-4
Publisher: Clarion Books

Newton happens across a red, red crayon that fairly hums with magic. Everything he draws with the crayon becomes real, and each and every item, his mother reminds him, is forbidden in the house: a bouncing ball, a vrooming racecar, a fire truck with real sirens. At last he draws a big red airplane and takes wing—out of the house, away from all constraints. Gilliland (Rivers, 1993, etc.) celebrates the artistic impulse in a delightfully understated fashion, and Sayles's softened pastels create the right mood for the adventure: Suggesting a sense of otherworldiness, they portray Newton, whose happiness simply sparks off the page, as a boy who takes his artistic m√átier seriously. Not a new idea—look to Crockett Johnson's Harold and the Purple Crayon (1958) and Anthony Browne's The Little Bear Book (1989)—but here it's particularly joyful. (Picture book. 5-8)