Poppy Pickle: A Little Girl with a Big Imagination

  • Poppy Pickle
  • written and illustrated by Emma Yarlett
  • published by Templar Books (Candlewick Press) (2016)
  • Roar Score: 5/5

Emma Yarlett’s previous book, Orion and the Dark, was one of the most fantastic surprises of 2015 for us, in terms of picture books. So it shouldn’t come as much surprise that her follow-up, Poppy Pickle, is near the top of the list for 2016.

Where Orion and the Dark was about a young boy who brings the darkness to life, Poppy Pickle is about a young girl with a similar power. Except instead of animating her biggest fear, she uses her imagination to conjure a bit of magic and make life just a shade more interesting.

Poppy, true to her name, always seems to find herself in a pickle. Her imagination is just too active and she’s always just a bit too excited. And her parents don’t have an unlimited pool of patience.

So one evening when The Incredible, Amazing Flying Cat fails to impress (even though it landed right on her dad’s head!), she’s sent upstairs to clean her room. But instead of cleaning, she lets her imagination run wild, and things quickly get out of hand.

Once again, Yarlett’s illustrations immediately set this book apart from the pack. The mixed media artwork and clever lettering are a feast for the eye. Most spreads are jam-packed with quirky details and side jokes that are great fun for little eyes to explore.

Kids (and adults) will delight in Poppy’s wild imagination, even when it gets her into a bigger pickle. Poppy Pickle a beautiful book you won’t mind returning to night after night. Highly recommended.

(Disclosure: Candlewick Press provided me with a review copy of this book. All opinions remain my own.)

Jamie is a publishing/book nerd who makes a living by wrangling words together into some sense of coherence. He's the founder and owner of The Roarbots and also a contributor to Syfy Wire, StarWars.com, and GeekDad. On top of that, he hosts The Great Big Beautiful Podcast, which celebrates creativity in popular culture, science, and technology by talking to a wide variety of people who contribute to it.

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