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Cover image for Poe won't go
Poe won't go
Other title(s):
Poe will not go
First edition.
Los Angeles : Disney Hyperion, 2018.
Physical Description:
32 unnumbered pages : color illustrations ; 29 cm
General Note:
Illustrations on lining-papers.
"When an elephant plants himself in the road and refuses to move, the people of Persnickety try all sorts of methods to get him to go--but one thoughtful little girl works up the courage to do what no one else has done: ask him."-- Provided by publisher.
Added Author:


Call Number
JP DiPucchio

On Order



When an elephant plants himself in the road and refuses to move, the people of Prickly Valley try all sorts of methods to get him to go - but one thoughtful little girl works up the courage to do what no one else has done: ask him. Balancing both hilarity and sensitivity, Poe Won't Go has the feel of a contemporary classic, reminding readers that there is power in one, power in listening, and power in being a friend.

Author Notes

Kelly DiPucchio is the award-winning author of several children's books, including The Sandwich Swap , cowritten with Queen Rania Al Abdullah and illustrated by Tricia Tusa; the New York Times best-selling Grace for President , illustrated by LeUyen Pham; and Gaston , illustrated by Christian Robinson. Kelly lives with her family in southeastern Michigan and is fluent in both English and dog. She invites you to visit her website at kellydipucchio.com. Illustrator Bio: Zachariah OHora is the illustrator of the New York Times best-selling book Wolfie the Bunny by Ame Dyckman, as well as The Teacher's Pet by Anica Mrose Rissi. He is the author and illustrator of a number of award-winning books, including The Huffington Post 's Best Children's Book of 2013, No Fits, Nilson! and My Cousin Momo! , a Boston Globe Best Children's Book of 2015. He lives in Narberth, Pennsylvania, with his wife and two sons. Visit him online at zohora.com or on Twitter @ZachariahOHora.

Reviews 6

School Library Journal Review

PreS-Gr 2-One morning, the town of Prickly Valley wakes up to find an elephant named Poe sitting in the middle of the town's only road. Various residents try everything they can think of to get Poe to go. They honk horns, push, pull, make noise, and beg, all to no avail. Pandemonium escalates as they bring in mice, clowns, magicians, firefighters, and even a peanut on roller skates. Poe won't budge. Finally, a little girl suggests that they simply ask Poe why he won't go. She is already fluent in both kitten and hedgehog and says anyone can understand elephant if they just listen hard enough. A short conversation and its surprising resulting revelation later, Poe is on his way, proving that a little kindness and understanding can provide the simplest solution. The acrylic-and-pencil illustrations render Poe larger than life and though gentle, he appears unhappy and befuddled by the townspeople's attempts to relocate him. By the story's end, he is smiling and doffing his absurdly small hat to the kind little girl. VERDICT A fun read-aloud that reinforces the importance of communication. A solid choice for storytime and small group sharing.-Kelly Roth, Bartow County Public Library, Cartersville, GA © Copyright 2018. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Publisher's Weekly Review

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. Author's agent: Steven Malk, Writers House. Illustrator's agent: Sean McCarthy, Sean McCarthy Literary. (Oct.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Horn Book Review

Poe, a massive elephant in plaid trousers, has taken a seat in the middle of Prickly Valleys only road, and he just wont go. The perturbed townspeople encourage the elephant to leave, with loud noises, entreaties, and food bribes, but their attempts all fail, even as increasingly resourceful and humorous removal tactics are employed. Things take a more drastic turn once the mayor arrives (and fireworks are briefly considered), but a young girl in a marigold-patterned headscarf intervenes. The aptly named Marigold questions whether anyone has asked Poe why he wont go. With a little help from the crowd, it is determined (rather inexplicablythere are no hints in the illustrations) that Poe has all the while been waiting forand unknowingly sitting onhis friend Moe, a monkey wearing a polka-dotted tie. Reunited, the two are immediately on their way, leaving readers with the narrators question: I wonder where theyll go? DiPucchios outlandish scenarios in this humorous, offbeat story are nicely supported by OHoras quirky, playful acrylic and pencil illustrationsfrom the small-scale (cages full of mice) to the larger-scale (crowd scenes that show a diverse population). patrick gall (c) Copyright 2018. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Kirkus Review

A pink elephant named Poe sits in the middle of a town's only road and won't budgeuntil someone bothers to find out why he's there.The people of Prickly Valley aren't happy that Poe is blocking their road. A traffic jam forms. People honk and yell at Poe. A traffic cop writes him a ticket. When that doesn't work, they try making all sorts of noises to shoo him away, from trombones to tap dancing, then turn to begging and bribing. They bring mice, cranes, and magicians. The mayor forms committees. Balloons, fire hoses, and the force of all the people in town can't get Poe to go. Finally, a brown-skinned girl named Marigold, who's wearing a hijab that reflects her name, asks the mayor (a pink-skinned woman with white hair and pearls) if anyone has thought to ask Poe why he won't go. Marigold, who is "fluent in both kitten and hedgehog," says that "anyone can speak elephant if they just listen hard enough." She climbs up and listens closely to Poe, who smiles for the first time, then she tells the crowd Poe is waiting for a friend. The mayor doesn't believe her, but a news reporter thinks he may have seen Poe's friend. OHora's matte-finish acrylic-and-pencil illustrations are reminiscent of Madeline's but with a pink and gold palette; Marigold is an endearing heroine. After the buildup and anticipation though, the story's conclusion (Poe was sitting on his friend, a monkey named Moe) is more puzzling than satisfying.A cute escapade for the silliest readers. (Picture book. 3-7) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Booklist Review

*Starred Review* When Poe, a huge elephant sporting a fedora and an unhappy expression, plops himself down in the middle of the road, the citizens of Prickly Valley an outstandingly diverse lot in Ohora's cartoon illustrations unite to find a way to get him to move. Unfortunately, all their horn honking, music blasting, tugging, and tickling come to naught. Not mice nor motivational speakers, copters, cranes, or clowns with horn squeakers can get Poe to budge. When at last a hijab-wearing child named Marigold suggests asking him why, the derisive townsfolk admit that they don't speak elephant. Well, anyone can speak elephant if they just listen hard enough, she responds, and, sure enough, it turns out he's waiting for a tardy friend . . . or, more precisely, on a friend, as he discovers when he stands up (at a news reporter's suggestion) to reveal his cheery buddy, Moe the monkey. DiPucchio's rhythmic narrative, which breaks into rhyme partway through, makes for a swinging, sometimes silly read-aloud. The pictures are likewise playful, with an immense pink pachyderm at their visual centers, and will be easily discernible to small or large audiences. Best of all, by offering an example of the value of listening better to other voices (and, for that matter, to public media), the episode makes a timely point.--John Peters Copyright 2018 Booklist

New York Review of Books Review

THESE FIVE new picture books are humansize stories made by human hands. The evidence: raw brush strokes, bleeding paint, pencil marks left untouched. Somehow that makes all the difference as the young characters in these stories try to find their way into the confusing adult world. The handmade artistry of these books helps to illuminate and animate children's feelings of wonder, loss and determination. THE STORY in JiHyeon Lee's wordless DOOR (Chronicle, 56 pp., $17.99; ages 4 to 8) starts on the frontispiece: A boy finds a key. A strange little insect leads him wandering among gray, drab people to a cobweb-draped door, apparently unopened for years. On the other side, they enter a land of blossoming trees, fantastical creatures, polka-dot food. The boy slowly sheds his grayness for pink, red and green. A bit Alice in Wonderland; but, truly, JiHyeon Lee, who gave us the delightful "Pool" (also wordless), is a unique and wildly imaginative talent - an original. The illustrations, in pencil, are whimsical, reserved, buoyant, childlike, expert. In a remarkable sixpage layout of doors and doors and doors, we see worlds connect and intersect as creatures enter and exit, laughing, playing, even getting married. Language (dialogue is drawn in nonsense squiggles) isn't a barrier. Neither are appearances. This land is a joyous celebration of differences and likenesses and harmony - and so is this magical book. how could you not love a deliciously pink elephant named Poe? Unfortunately, the townspeople of Prickly Valley do not. In POE WON'T GO (Disney-Hyperion, 40 pp., $17.99; ages 4 to 8), written by Kelly DiPucchio and illustrated by Zachariah OHora, a rather large elephant has plunked himself right in the middle of the only road in town. This is a delightful children's fable in the form of a humorous news story. The colorful illustrations look like retro linocut prints, while the hand-drawn text brings to life the atmosphere of panic in Prickly Valley. The townspeople try everything to get rid of Poe: They attempt to bribe him with cheese, they hire a magician to make him disappear, they tie a hundred balloons to his limbs. The mayor arrives with her committees and councils and Styrofoam cups and real-life politics. In the end, throwing everything at the problem does not solve it - a little kindness does. It comes in the shape of a small girl, Marigold. She saves the day by asking Poe why he won't go (in elephant of course). For the first time, Poe smiles. Marigold puts her ear to his forehead, listens carefully, then explains, "He's waiting for a friend." The friend is a monkey wearing a polka-dot tie. Poe tips his black fedora and leaves with the monkey on his shoulder. At the end of the story, the reader is asked, "I wonder where they'll go?" (Let's hope it is a wonderful place where animals gather in dapper getups.) CARMELA FULL OF WISHES (Putnam, 40 pp., $17.99; ages 4 to 8) is the second collaboration between the author Matt de la Peña and the illustrator Christian Robinson following the beautiful "Last Stop on Market Street," which won a Newbery Medal. In this one, it is Carmela's birthday, and, for once, she is allowed to help her big brother outside with the chores. As she push-scooters after him jingling her bracelets, they pass a flower vendor's van, a corn-on-astick (elote) stand and a Mexican bakery. We are in the streets of an immigrant neighborhood where hope and hardship mingle. It is a decoupage world, with muddy colors, sketchy details and brush stroke backgrounds: a child's painting. The visuals, like the story, have a more muted and somber tone than "Last Stop on Market Street," but it is moving in similar ways. Among the street's cement paving stones, Carmela finds a lone dandelion. Her brother tells her to make a wish. Her wishes are cleverly illustrated as papel picados, Mexican hand-cut paper banners. At first, she wishes for a machine that spits out candy. On second thought, she wishes for her father's immigration papers to be fixed (so he can, finally, come home). She wishes for her mother to be pampered like a guest at the hotel where she works. Carmela drops her dandelion, and its spores scatter. She is distraught. She imagines her wishes and hopes will be lost and destroyed. Her brother, who is mostly irritated by Carmela, shows his true colors by taking her to the shore, where the sky is filled with dandelion spores and soaring white birds. A place of abundant wishes. THE ILLUSTRATOR CORINNA LUYKEN helps bring Marcy Campbell's characters to life in ADRIAN SIMCOX DOES NOT HAVE A HORSE (Dial, 40 pp., $17.99; ages 4 to 8). Chloe is determined to prove that Adrian Simcox, the lonely daydreamer in her class, is a liar. He has been telling "anyone who will listen that he has a horse." Finally, after simmering for days, she bursts out (while hanging upside down from the monkey bars) to the whole class (including Adrian Simcox) that he does not have a horse. Adrian Simcox is devastated. The next day, Chloe's mother takes her to his house. He lives on the wrong side of the tracks with his grandparents. He plays alone in a decrepit, overgrown yard. Chloe wants to call him a liar again, but instead - she asks him about his horse. By using his imagination, Adrian Simcox comes to life and dreams of a better one. Luyken depicts nature as a wild whirlwind that eventually envelops the characters. She has a charming drawing style, but she also brings a jagged, emotional charge to the story. It is the charge of Adrian Simcox's imagination - where the horse lives. Chloe is stubborn and willful, but she listens and learns and understands. Her first-person narration is realistic, witty and endearing. Chloe wants a series. This heroine is ready for more adventures. IN LIZA JANE AND THE DRAGON (BlackSheep, 32 pp., $16.95; ages 4 to 8), a first children's book written by the novelist Laura Lippman and illustrated by Kate Samworth, Liza Jane has a not-so-unfamiliar problem: Nobody listens to her. Least of all her parents. So she fires them and puts up a wanted sign for new ones. Like Mary Poppins, a dragon answers her ad and gets the job. "Liza Jane and the Dragon" feels as if it were written in the 1970 s, and it has the colors and the clothes and, of course, the psychedelic monster to go with it. At the start, Liza Jane and her fish, Swimmer, are the only characters who are colored in. Everything and everybody else is a sepia-wash background. The dragon brings excitement - color, fire, pizza every night - but he is not "Puff." He is destructive and lazy. His only response each time he loses his temper and burns another part of the house to a charred crisp is, "Well, I'm a dragon." That's a reasonable argument. We cannot change the essential nature of people or animals - especially mythical ones. Living in an untidy, charred ruin and sick of pizza, Liza Jane gets rid of the dragon and rehires her parents (now in color, too). This enjoyable book delivers a lesson, and its playful drawings invite the young reader into a wonderful place somewhere between fantasy and reality. JUMAN MALOUF is the author and illustrator of "A Trilogy of Two."