I Love Lemonade
I Love Lemonade is a confusing and dark picture book. Turkey wants revenge against Goat, though why is never made clear. Again, for no apparent reason, Turkey tries to trick Sheep into drinking a glass of “lemonade” (pee). Most of the book is spent with Turkey encouraging Sheep to try the “lemonade.” When Sheep suspects something, he suggests that Turkey drink it. Inexplicably, Turkey does. Though no further revenge is needed, Sheep then offers the bird-brained Turkey a consolation “cookie” (cow poop).
It is difficult to develop story characters when they act randomly. It is also hard to empathize with a protagonist who is both mean and gullible. The story uses negative examples to convey the useful theme of “do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”
The artwork, while spare, is very effective at conveying action and humor. The illustration style is reminiscent of that of Sandra Boynton. Unfortunately, the nearly actionless manuscript offers little room for the artist to shine, with most of the spreads consisting of Sheep and Turkey simply conversing. Leave this “cookie” in the field.
Mark Sommerset • Rowan Sommerset, Illustrator