cover image Poe Won’t Go

Poe Won’t Go

Kelly DiPucchio, illus. by Zachariah OHora. Disney-Hyperion, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-148479059-5

In this collaboration from DiPucchio (Gaston) and OHora (The Teacher’s Pet), a bright pink elephant wearing a jaunty Tyrolean hat impedes traffic in Prickly Valley. Indifferent to honking, ticketing, tickling, pushing, and mayoral decree (“They blew trombones and blasted megaphones”), Poe simply will not move. Finally, Marigold, a girl wearing a stylish floral hijab, proposes a different approach: “Has anyone asked Poe why he won’t go?” Initially ridiculed for her idea, Marigold perseveres (“Anyone can speak elephant if they just listen hard enough”), and when Poe reveals his sweet reason for staying, kindness and open communication prevail over anger and assumption. OHora’s illustrations are a treat. He infuses the characters, even nameless townspeople, with unique personalities and styles, and shifts in perspective—from wide views that depict Poe surrounded by cars and crowds to close spreads that show only Poe’s shocked expression and a tiny, satisfied Marigold—inspire a deeper audience connection with this patient elephant and wise youth. Ages 3–5. [em]Author’s agent: Steven Malk, Writers House. Illustrator’s agent: Sean McCarthy, Sean McCarthy Literary. (Oct.) [/em]