Oh, the Thinks You Can Think!

Book review by
Peter Lewis, Common Sense Media
Oh, the Thinks You Can Think! Book Poster Image
Dr. Seuss in is psychedelic mode here.

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The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Violence & Scariness
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What parents need to know

Parents need to know that the verse here is roaring, the art typically full of strange animals, and the call to free your mind highly appealing.

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What's the story?

Dr. Seuss in is psychedelic mode here: The candy colors flash and swirl as if on fire, the creatures bend the imagination, and the urge to think freely runs unfettered. Just consider the wild names given to creatures--guffs, snuvs, bloogs, zongs, jibboos--and places: Da-Dake, Na-Nupp, and the wonderful Stairs in the Night. Here is creative thinking in overdrive.

Is it any good?

Dr. Seuss casts off from the shore of ordinary thinking and invites his readers along to spend some time thinking freely, vibrantly, and passionately. Make connections where there haven't been any before, he suggests; go ahead and make things up.

As most always, what Seuss has to say is a breath of fresh air, blowing the cobwebs out of the old imagination. But here it feels especially zany and full of spice, and his colors have gone electric and dazzling: candy-striped tree trunks, purple skies and elephants, magenta gloves and trees, and multicolored creatures. It is a breath-stealing ride, not to mention a sharp exercise in sounding letters into words. There are pages here that throw a jimjam or two: One 4-year-old melted a little deeper into the sofa when the shadowy jibboo appeared in the night street, but the shivers were more delicious than scary.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the made-up creatures in this book. Encourage kids to make up their own creatures.

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