December 9, 2013
Picture Day Perfection by Deborah Diesen, illustrated by Dan Santat
Picture Day Perfection
by Deborah Diesen
illustrated by Dan Santat
Abrams Books for Young Readers
Have you ever read a picture book and then looked behind the door to make sure the author or illustrator wasn’t hiding in the house, spying on your kid? That’s how I felt when I was reading Picture Day Perfection. Not only does he wake up with major bed head, but his favorite shirt is wrinkled and stained. That’s my son in a nut shell.
As if this wasn’t enough to prevent a top-notch photo, just like me, the parent’s in this book refuse to go with one of the stunning new background options, such as Peacock Blue or Pizzazzy Purple. These parents are deadly dull and instead opt for “traditional gray” with which our main character’s favorite shirt blends perfectly. Otherwise, it doesn’t exactly make for the best possible picture.
Unless of course, that’s your plan.
For reasons known only by certain young males of our society, the main character is out to ruin his school photo. His plan is to make an absurd or horrid and disgusting face at just the right moment. Unfortunately, while he’s chuckling about this fantastic plan, the photographer snaps the picture and catches him with a sappy grin.
Santat’s brightly colored illustrations are the perfect compliment to this boy’s dark plans. The scowls, glares and shocked indignation that Santat manages to capture on his character’s face contrast perfectly with the vibrant color pallet used for the illustrations.
This would make a fun read aloud for family time, school picture time or story hour, providing of course that someone brings along a camera to capture the antics that are sure to ensue as everyone demonstrates their own photo wrecking face.