The Simples Love a Picnic by J.C. Phillipps

Note: I occasionally accept review copies from the publisher. Posts written from review copies are labeled. All opinions are my own. Posts may contain affiliate links. I may receive compensation for any purchased items.

The Simples Love a Picnic by J.C. Phillips (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, May 2014) is so much fun! It is a story of a family going on a picnic in the park. But of course, parks have lots of undesirables…squirrels, and ants, and too many people playing sports. This was a picnic trip that I could relate to: our family tends to have disastrous types of picnic adventures too.

I love the cut paper/collage look of the illustrations in this book; I’m a big fan of J.C. Phillipps’ style. The whimsical look to the illustrations gives such a sense of play to the whole story. I also love how it is in present tense. I am not a fan of present tense stories, but in this book, it works wonderfully. We don’t know what adventures await this Simple family, so having present tense is simply great.

My son (age 6) thought The Simples Love a Picnic was a lot of fun to read. My daughter (age 2), asked for repeated readings. She loved pointing out things in the pictures, finding familiar items, and screeching “aaaah!” whenever something went wrong. I don’t want to give up too much so I’ll just leave it at that.

Let’s just say that I hope we get to join the Simples on more adventures some day. My kids and I will definitely look forward to it.

Note: On my homeschooling blog and in some of my educational products, I use J.C. Phillipps’ NinjaWoman Clip Art Studios art under a commercial use license. I obviously love her work, and hope to own license to her entire clip art store someday too!


Reviewed on June 5, 2014

About the author 

Rebecca Reid

Rebecca Reid is a homeschooling, stay-at-home mother seeking to make the journey of life-long learning fun by reading lots of good books. Rebecca Reads provides reviews of children's literature she has enjoyed with her children; nonfiction that enhances understanding of educational philosophies, history and more; and classical literature that Rebecca enjoys reading.

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