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egg by Kevin Henkes

egg marks Kevin Henkes' 50th book, and it echoes, in palette and deceptively simple tone, one of my all-time favorite books by him, A Good Day.

Repetition of words and images in egg, some pages divided into four or even sixteen panels, creates anticipation and, best of all, makes it a book that, like A Good Day, is a treat for beginning readers. egg begins, "egg, egg, egg, egg / crack, crack, crack, egg." Three eggs hatch, the fourth doesn't.

There is, "waiting, waiting, waiting, waiting," then, when the hatchlings return, listening and "peck, peck, peck." A crack leads to a hatch which leads to a SURPRISE! Henkes ends his book with camaraderie between the hatchlings and a little sunshiny twist on the final page.

I have read egg over and over, to kindergarteners and with first and second graders struggling to learn to read. For these children especially, Henkes' books are a treasure trove when compared to the ancient primers we have on the shelves of my library. I feel like I end up saying this every time I review a new book from this author I have been following for 20+ years now, but Henkes' enormous talent centers on his ability to capture the joyful essence of childhood, the excitement, the emotions, the quiet moments, and put them on the page with words and illustrations. I am so grateful that my children and subsequent generations of children are growing up with his picture and chapter books.

Source: Review Copy


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