Where has this book been all my life? My mum seems to know it well but it wasn't until I spotted it in the book store (and promptly purchased it) that I knew it existed.
Apart from Harold himself, everything in the story is illustrated in purple lines. Harold decides where he is going to go and what he is going to do, facing obstacles and consequences at every turn. He is a brave, kind and quick-thinking boy whose imagination is his greatest strength.
I love this book because it shows that with the aid of imagination you can go anywhere and do anything. There are no adults in the books, telling Harold what he should or should not do or swooping in to save him when he's in trouble. Harold doesn't need any help but his own because imagination cannot harm him, only help him to imagine situations and how he will handle them.
This is a great book for children but I also think it is a brilliant book for creative writers. With fiction, characters face obstacles and we are constantly asking ourselves "what if?" to see how the story can progress in new and interesting ways. Sometimes when we are writing, we come up with an unexpected plot twist and must improvise where the story will go and what the characters will do next.
Purple is my favourite colour and I associate it with creativity and imagination. I think that in future, whenever I am lacking the fuel to motivate my writing, I will look to Harold's exemplary behaviour for inspiration.
'Harold and the Purple Crayon' is a book I would recommend to anyone with young children. It's a book that will ignite their imaginations and yours. It is also a book for anyone who can see imaginative prospects in a purple crayon.