Crockett Johnson - Harold and the Purple Crayon

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Have a bedtime adventure with Harold and the Purple Crayon

Mar 1, 2001
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:Simple illustrations, easy to follow story. Very soothing for bedtime.

Cons:None

The Bottom Line: Harold and the Purple Crayon is a definite Must Have for kids! Works just as well as 'regular' reading material as it does for a bedtime story.


My four year old son has graduated from Goodnight Moon and passed that book on to his little brother. Bedtime stories are a big part of our nightly ritual here, so I dug around looking for something new. I found Harold and the Purple Crayon which I read way way back in my distant childhood. Crockett Johnson wrote and published this book in 1955, so chances are that we all have read it at one point.

~~ The Story ~~
Harold wants to take a walk in the moonlight and by using his handy-dandy (sorry, Blue's Clues playing in the background here) purple crayon, draws the moon he needs.

His travels and his crayons take him by a tree which he decides needs a dragon to guard the apples, picnicking with a moose and porcupine, sailing on a boat, climbing a mountain, riding a balloon and finally on his way home. Harold makes everything he needs for his adventure by drawing it with his crayon. When he decides that he is tired and wants to go to bed, he looks for the moon and realizes that the moon is always outside his bedroom window. Drawing his window around the moon, Harold puts himself back at home and in bed.

The illustrations are very simple and actually do look like they were drawn by a child. They are simple black and white drawings of Harold and everything else, of course is purple. The drawings are at times not-quite finished, so that you can see Harold in progress.

The use of imagination in Harold and the Purple Crayon is wonderful. My son plays along and thinks of other things that Harold could draw for his trip. What if Harold decided to travel by truck or train instead of a sailboat?

I use this book as a bedtime story because I find it easy to make the transition from Harold going to sleep to my son going to sleep. Just as easily, you can read it and go on to arts & crafts time at home. Harold and the Purple Crayon is delightful that way. An adventure story and bedtime story and whatever else Harold sparks your imagination for!

I am now on the hunt for the other Harold and the Purple Crayon books. I fully expect those to be as great as the original!


Recommend this product? Yes

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