Bob Ross, Peapod the Squirrel, and the Happy Accident is an adorable story about art, making happy accidents and not mistakes, and the joy of painting. It is everything we loved about Bob Ross from his demeanor to his confidence, to his belief in “you the viewer/reader.” If you do not hear Ross saying, “Happy Little Accident,” you are lying.
Robb Perlman is the author of this and the first Bob and Peapod book, Bob Ross and Peapod the Squirrel which I have not read but seems equally delightful due to what I was able to locate about it. However, this sequel seems a bit more sophisticated by using such things as more complex paint color names (anyone know Van Dyke brown?). This is not just old school blue, red, green. We are getting downright serious!
But of course, the tone of the book is anything but serious. It is lighthearted but gets the message across. In the middle of Jason Kavser’s illustrations (which are cartoony, cute, and not overly detailed, but expressive) we will find some of Bob Ross’ own work. You might recognize a few, but all of them are classic Bob Ross. As he paints his lone tree, you can hear him saying about giving him friends; everyone needs friends. And everyone should read this picture book!
The idea of a mistake made is actually a happy accident and you do not know where it will lead you, is throughout the entire read. It can get repetitive, but for the child reading, that is the point. Ross and the author want to reinforce that “mistakes” happen, but that they are not actual mistakes. And they also reinforce that you might make a tree, but it is okay if it does not look the same as other people’s trees.
This book is an all-ages story to be read to, a handful could read with help, and would work in a classroom or personal reading setting.