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Lynne Rickards

Illustrated by Margaret Chamberlain

Picture Book

Ages 4 to 6

Scholastic, 2008, 0-54508608-6

  One morning Patrick the penguin wakes up to discover that he has turned pink from the top of his feathery head to the tips of his leathery feet. Naturally Patrick is appalled. How could such a thing have happened? Penguins are not supposed to be pink, and boy penguins are definitely not supposed to be pink. Patrick’s father shows the upset little penguin that there are some boy birds who are pink – flamingoes. Perhaps being pink won’t be that bad.

  Patrick tries to live with his pink state, but the teasing at school is just too much. It is so hard being different that he decides to join his pink flamingo brethren in Africa.

 And so Patrick leaves his chilly home and swims north all the way to Africa. When he meets up with the flamingoes he is delighted. Surely here he will fit in.

  When we are young being different in some way can seem like the worse thing in the world. Children like to “fit in” with their peers, and they hate it when something about them sets them apart and exposes them to being teased. In this clever and amusing picture book Lynne Rickards explores the idea of differentness. She shows her readers that being different need to be that bad, and that one can rise above such an inconvenience in a grand way, just as Patrick does.



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