There is nothing better than a book that makes you laugh every single time you read it and trust me this is one of our repeat reads. Karen Beaumont’s book I Ain’t Gonna Paint No More illustrated by David Catrow needs to be more than read though, it really has to be sung or shouted because it is so awesome. My son loves this book for a bedtime story (but it really just riles him up) it really is more of a get up and dance around book. From the first page when the indignant mama catches her little boy having painted the entire room, you just have to holler out with her, Ya ain’t a-gonna paint no more! The rhymes are wonderful, it only took a couple of times reading this book and my son was singing along at the top of his voice (sorry neighbors). Each page is set up so that the reader is left guessing what body part is going to be painted next, but the rhyme helps give a good clue, which really keeps younger readers engaged: I just can’t stand not to paint my… This is a book that works really well with repeat reads; the first time you can enjoy the story and humor, then focus on trying to figure on the rhyming words and body parts on another read through. When I use this as part of circle time in my class I always read it multiple times in a week and each read through has increased engagement. Each and every page, the boy promises to stop painting, but something always changes his mind, until mama shows up, again!

Catrow’s pictures are sublime. The little boy, with his sticky out ears, and pinched face, indignant expression, stuck in a bathtub, surrounded by paint everywhere- hilarious! When the paint gets cleaned up the pictures are done in black and white, and as the boy adds one color at a time to his body, only that color is added to the picture. There is some brilliant painting going on here, when the little guy paints his arm, he paints ants crawling up his arm, who then crawl into the smiling open mouth on the face he paints on his hand; messy but brilliant. This book is a definite favorite in our house!