Title: Giraffe Problems
Author: Jory John | Illustrator: Lane Smith
Publisher: Random House | Published: September 25, 2008
Theme: Self Image
Character Origin: Animals
Book Type: Picture Book | Pages: 42
Ages: 3-7 | Book Level: 2.4 | Lexile Measure: AD530L
Synopsis: Can you guess what’s making this giraffe self-conscious? Could it be . . . HIS ENORMOUS NECK?? Yes, it’s exactly that–how on earth did you figure it out?
Edward the giraffe can’t understand why his neck is as long and bendy and, well, ridiculous as it is. No other animal has a neck this absurd. He’s tried disguising it, dressing it up, strategically hiding it behind bushes–honestly, anything you can think of, he’s tried.
Just when he has exhausted his neck-hiding options and is about to throw in the towel, a turtle swoops in (well, ambles in, very slowly) and helps him understand that his neck has a purpose, and looks excellent in a bow tie.
Jory John and Lane Smith have truly outdone themselves in this companion book to Penguin Problems.
This was a very enjoyable (and relatable) book. Each of us has a physical attribute that we’d like to change or that we think is a hassle. The giraffe doesn’t like his neck until he is able to use it to help a new friend. Sometimes it’s the least appealing thing (in our eyes) that is one of our strongest attributes to others.
The earth tone color palette was a good choice for this book. Smith’s illustrations were warm and rich with character. I even liked the color variation of the text. The way that the animals were painted added texture and detail that you don’t see too often. John did not disappoint with his well-written stanzas. This is a keeper!