Interrupting Chicken: Cookies for Breakfast by David Ezra Stein

Interrupting Chicken: Cookies for Breakfast by David Ezra Stein.  Candlewick Press, 2021. 9781536207781

Rating:  1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 5

Format: Hardcover picture book

What did you like about the book? Saturday morning snuggles with the little red chicken and Papa bring a bit of disagreement; Chicken wants to have cookies for breakfast, and Papa wants to sleep in.  They compromise by agreeing to read a nursery rhyme book in Papa’s bed, but Chicken, true to form, interrupts every rhyme with not-so-subtle hints about his desired breakfast: “There was an old woman who lived in a shoe.  She had so many… Cookies, she gave me a few!”  Papa does not give in, and tries to prolong his own rest time, but when Chicken’s last ditch effort (an original poem, ‘Chikn’s Rime’) awakens Papa’s hungry stomach, the pair finally heads to the kitchen to make cakes for breakfast … pancakes.

David Ezra Stein has done it again!  This story of a loving relationship between father and child is made only more endearing by Chicken’s energetic persistence and Papa’s firm reluctance, and readers of any age will be able to relate to the battle of wills that takes place (around both appropriate food choices and morning routines).  Incorporating three different illustration styles enhances the silliness, particularly when the bright-toned Chicken is superimposed over the pastel-hued nursery rhyme pages, startling the characters and sharing cookies with them.  As with previous outings, an uproarious read aloud is guaranteed, and this will be a popular choice for independent readers as well.

Anything you did not like about the book?  Kindergarten teachers have mentioned to me several times over the past few years that many of their students are unfamiliar with the traditional nursery rhymes that are featured in this book, so there might be a bit of a disconnect.  

To whom would you recommend this book? Interrupting Chicken fans will be so excited for book number 3, and readers who gravitate toward humorous stories by the likes of Mo Willems or Jory John will find a lot to love too.

Who should buy this book? Public and elementary school libraries, preschools and K-2 classrooms

Where would you shelve it?  Picture books

Should we (librarians) put this on the top of our “to read” piles?  No

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City:  Leigh Russell King, Lincoln Street School, Northborough, Massachusetts.

Date of review: December 27, 2021

This entry was posted in *Book Review, *Picture Book, *Starred Review, Author, David Ezra Stein, Fatherhood, Humor, Nursery rhymes, Series and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.