Sweet, Fun, and Happy: If Chocolate Were Purple by Jen Barton and Illustrated by Yoko Matsuoka

Our family totally ate this book up.  It’s so nice to read a book that is just pure fun, silliness, and sweetness.  Here, in rhyming verse, you can contemplate a very different world with your children and tell them they are loved.  We giggled, made up our own, “What Ifs,” and ended the story by saying, “Awwwwwe.”  This book is great for everyone and promotes only good things and reassurance.  It does create an unnatural craving for chocolate, but I definitely can deal with that.  It also prompted some very interesting questions from my son that left me feeling so grateful I live in an age where I can look up things in seconds. (If you’re wondering, some monkeys do, in fact, eat fish.  Wouldn’t know that if my son hadn’t asked me this after reading this book.)  Each time we’ve read, If Chocolate Were Purple, we get that happy-lovey family feeling.  It’s a win!

All Ages. Flickerfawn Publications.  June 2013. 28 pages. ISBN: 978-0615783437. Fiction.

Where to Get it:

Why You Should Read If Chocolate Were Purple:

  • You very well may get a kiss and a hug after reading this book with your child.
  • It does a great job of spurring on lots of,”What If” questions long after finishing the book. (For weeks! We can’t look at this book without it spawning random crazy questions.  It’s great!)
  • It is wonderfully reassuring, positive, and sweet.
  • This is a great book for helping a rough day with your little ones turn a corner.
  • It tells the message that you will always love your child no matter what changes around them in a fun way.  Children, I find, really do thrive with reassurance — and if it is in a book, it seems to have all the more power behind it.
  • Fun, happy, and whimsical illustrations.  Yoko Matsuoka has a great imagination to be to visual the ideas in this book.

How My Three-and-a Half-Year-Old Son Responds to this Book:

He gave me a hug and snuggled up to me.  He then told me he will love me forever — and then I got a kiss planted firmly on my cheek.  It was awesome.  I read it to him again and I got another hug.  In fact, every single time I’ve read this book to him there’s a pause after the end and some manner of affection is bestowed upon me.  I absolutely eat it up.  This is a particularly great book for those difficult days when things are a bit out of sync between us.  It’s a fun way for me to communicate to him that I love him in a way he seems to really understand.

I’m most impressed with all of the questions this book elicits from him.  We couldn’t get through a single page without him asking (what felt like) a million questions.  Why isn’t chocolate purple?  Could chocolate be purple?  Can I have some chocolate?  Mama, I think you would like some chocolate, let’s eat some chocolate soon!  Can bumble bees swim?  Why can’t they swim?  Let’s teach them how to swim!  Can you train a bumble bee?  Let’s have a bumble bee for a pet!  And these were the questions from the first page.  He’s in the phase where he’s figuring out what’s real and what’s pretend — so this was a great book for us to read (again and again and again).

He really digs this book.  It’s “only” 28 pages — but each time we read it, he extracts each page and phrase for all that its worth.

Author/Illustrator Websites:

Other Reviews of this Book:

Where Obtained:  I received a review copy from the author.  No other compensation was received.  The opinions expressed here are my own.  I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

FTC Disclosures:  Some of the links in the post above are Amazon affiliate links and others are IndieBound affiliate links. If you click on the link and purchase something, I will receive an affiliate commission at no additional cost to you. Which goes to fund my family’s picture book habit.  It’s a vicious cycle, but we manage.  I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”


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