ARCHIE THE ARTY SLOTH
Written and Illustrated by: Heath McKenzie
Published by: Little Hare; First edition (1 May 2019)
Ages: 4 – 7 years
Theme: acceptance, believing in oneself, art.
Opening Lines: Archie was bored. This happened surprisingly often, given that Archie was a sloth.
Synopsis: (from back of book) Archie is given a 1000-piece art set and it gives him a great idea – he can put on an art show with the other sloths! But when Archie spies his friends’ paintings, he wants to back out of the show – his painting isn’t half as good! There’s only one animal who can help Archie find his inner-artist again.
Why I like this: This is a cute story about accepting what you can do – is what you can do. There is no wrong or right way to produce art. It’s what you do that matters and not whether it’s as good as or better than someone else’s. Art like music or singing comes from within and it’s accepting that inner self that is the takeaway from this beautifully illustrated story. Archie is an unusually active sloth and feeling bored until someone gives him an art set. He decides to put on an art show roping in all the other sloths to produce their art pieces and when they are put on display Archie is mortified and feels his is not a good as the others and hides behind his painting – UNTIL… Sorry you’ll have to read it to find out what happens. This is a great story for at home and especially at school when kids often feel they may not be as good if not better than another child. It’s about believing in oneself, about acceptance and that no matter what – it is ok!
As a writer I found this to be also a great mentor text. It immediately introduces the main character and his problem. It shows how a lot is left to the illustration. Like when the text said someone had brought back something for Archie and the other sloths heaved sighs of relief. Only in the illustration do we know what it is. The next page says… Archie dabbled in a few different things. He tried this. And he tried that. Again only the illustrations show what they were. The text also mentions the art fans, but again only in the illustrations do we see who they are. The bold illustrations also provide subtle humour. This is a wonderful read aloud.
Resources/Findings: A bit about the author/illustrator. As you will see he loves to draw… https://www.heathmck.com/about-me
This is a great page of down-loadable pages from Heath’s website for kids to create magic … https://www.heathmck.com/things-to-do
I like Heath’s words… Just be YOU!
I’m always happy reviewing Picture Books that come my way and share them with you. If you would like to see more please pop over to Susanna Leonard Hills Blog where there are hundreds of books reviewed by other like minded authors and writers. Thank you for popping in and I hope you return again soon.
I seriously love slot books so much; thanks for scouting this one out for us!
What a lovely review, Diane. You make me want to go get a copy — and I probably will because I have a grandson this would be perfect for — he’s somewhat a perfectionist. Great theme. And, I love sloths, too!
Your welcome Pat. Hope you find a copy for him. All the best.
Oh, now I have to find out what happens! But……there are no copies anywhere in our library system or as an interlibrary loan…..
Oh no! Can you not ask them to order it in? Hopefully you may come across it.
Diane, I LOVE that cover. I seem to have a soft spot for sloths and this books sound so fun. I hadn’t seen it, yet. Thanks so much for featuring it!
You are so welcome Maria I hope you manage to locate a copy to read.
I love the opening line and the front cover! I’ll be checking this out in my local library!
Thank you Emily. Glad you like it.