Pencil should have stopped meeting writing tools after they meet Eraser. Karen Kilpatrick and the gang (Luis O. Ramos, Jr. and German Blanco) have created a new Pencil and Eraser picture book book (ages 4 to 7) with When Pencil Met the Markers. But this time the point of the story is that it is okay to “color outside the lines.” In fact, it is encouraged after the initial, “Oh no! You cannot do that! You cannot be different!” We also learn that you cannot erase the color or marks a marker makes, but you can add to it and create something new. Maybe even something better.
This book is cute but it has been done before. We saw a similar story with the book Red: A Crayon’s Story by Michael Hall. Only, this time the marker is what color it says it is (it looks and is purple) but it is just not like the other markers who are neat and color inside the lines. The theme is to be yourself, no matter what that means. And to be creative whatever that means. The ending hints at a third book as we see a set of crayons off to the side coming into the picture.
The art is basic, little to no color and the details minimal. I read this in a reader copy format. There is a lot of white space that Purple did not color, therefore, I am going to take my crayons and finish coloring in some of those pages. As a famous painter (and the characters of the story) said, “There are no mistakes.” And having a sort-of coloring book is what is going to make When Pencil Met the Markers not a mistake for me to have found.