Perfect Picture Book Friday! Crankee Doodle by Tom Angleberger

HAPPY YOU’RE WELCOMEING! (the day that follows Thanksgiving 😉 )

I am sitting here trying to recover from “I shouldn’t have had that second piece of pumpkin pie” syndrome. I was going to pass on Perfect Picture Book Friday this week because I was feeling super lazy for some reason (it had nothing to do with, say, eating too much, right? 😉 ), but then I was sitting here reading a really great picture book I picked up at the Lititz Kid and Teen Literature Festival called Crankee Doodle and I really wanted to tell you about it.



Susanna Leonard Hill has a feature on her blog called Perfect Picture Book Friday. It is a list of “perfect” picture books recommended by all sorts of people. I chose this book because I always wondered why Mr. Doodle was mistaking feathers for dried pasta.

crankeeCrankee Doodle

by Tom Angleberger

Illustrated by Cece Bell

32 pages – ages 4+
Published by Clarion Books on June 4, 2013

Theme/Topic- Humor / folk song

Genre- Fiction

Opening and Synopsis- Opening – “I’m bored.”


Synopsis – from the inside jacket – “Ever wonder what the song “Yankee Doodle Dandy” means, exactly? And what’s with the macaroni? Turns out it didn’t make any sense to Mr. Doodle, either. In fact, it made him pretty, um, cranky. This unapologetically silly picture book reveals that the legendary ride to town (and the whole macaroni thing) was all suggested by Mr. Doodle’s overeager pony.”

Why I liked this book- Well, I am not the only one who likes this book, because as I decided it was Perfect Picture Book Friday worthy, I found that Carrie Finison thought the same thing because she nominated it last year – see her review HERE! 🙂 I loved the humor in the book! I have to admit the Yankee Doodle song never really made sense to me and I love how Mr. Angleberger and Ms. Bell combine forces to poke fun at the silly song. Mr. Angleberger wrote the super popular and very funny Origami Yoda books, and you can see his sense of humor pulling through in this book. Pony is an awesome character, never saying more than a sentence or two (well, except for that one paragraph after Mr. Doodle insults him), while Mr. Doodle mostly speaks in long paragraphs. This is an AWESOME read-aloud! Ms. Bell’s illustrations are funny, and to the awesomeness of the book!

Activities and Resources- There is a note at the end of the book, written by Crankee Doodle’s pony, that tells a little bit about the origins of the song. Ms. Finison linked to some great song related activities on her blog (CLICK HERE) so I found some other type of activities. has a cool craft to make a Yankee Doodle tri-cornered hat – Click HERE
You have to check out Sesame Street’s Don Music writing Yankee Doodle and getting upset about how silly the song is. 😀

To find more Perfect Picture Books please visit Susanna Hill’s blog HERE!




Categories: Age 1-5, Age 6-9, Perfect Picture Book Friday

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18 replies

  1. Oh yes, now I remember Carrie’s review. This is an hilarious look at the song. It’s good to have a laugh instead of being, umm.. cranky! 😉 Great Choice Erik!

  2. That video is hilarious! Crankee Doodle sounds hilarious! You’re hilarious Erik! I’m rolling on the floor! Thanks for the snort!

  3. I’ve got to read this one. That song has always left me wondering and….well, cranky. 😀 Thanks for showcasing this one, Erik!

  4. Great choice, Erik! Looks super funny! I’m going to add this one to my list.

  5. Sounds fun! I’m going to look for it. Thanks!

  6. Erik, on occasion there are books I end up buying IMMEDiately after reading it. This was one of them. I think this book is hilarious! I couldn’t resist it 🙂 Great review!

  7. Does it mention anything about Thomas Jefferson and mac’n cheese? Guess I’ll go find out!. Sounds terrific!

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