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Amanda Fox, author
After a long day of coloring, the markers are heading home to their boxes—but Glitter can't find her cap! With the help of a motley crew of markers, she journeys through Markertown she meets a group of repurposed markers that help her envision a different future. Markertown is a story that commends kindness and friendship. It embraces upcycling not only markers, but parts of ourselves along our journey. Readers should walk away understanding that true sparkle and shine come from within. So let the mark you leave on the world be one of kindness!
At the end of the school day, all the markers and pens have to find their way home to Markertown in Fox’s entertaining debut. Each marker returns to a unique home: the “classics” live at Colorful Court, the flair pens have an artsy resort, and dry-erase markers roam around Whiteboard park—a black and white carnival perfect for erasable pens. But when Glitter loses her cap on the way home, she wonders where the other capless markers go to live, and more importantly, what will happen to her now that she doesn’t belong. Accompanied by Fox’s dynamic and lively illustrations, Markertown is a heartfelt and encouraging story about embracing your inner worth and finding new ways to showcase your talents.

The kaleidoscopic pages render a beautiful and rambunctious marker world, at times at the expense of the text, which occasionally fades into the background and fights to be seen. The size and placement of Fox’s whimsical font frequently clashes with the busier scenes, causing the plot to lose momentum in places—and in some instances, such as when Pink is yelling alliterative insults at Glitter, the page becomes overcrowded and challenging to read. That being said, the collage of hues and activity will give younger readers plenty of space to exercise their imaginations.

The story more than makes up for these design issues in heart and joy. The rhyming narrative offers a fun readability, and kids will enjoy lingering over the small details bursting out of each page. Readers will be inspired to pick up their own markers, and Fox features kids’ illustrations throughout the story, including a page at the end that invites readers to draw their own flag. This cheerful and inspiring story is an ode to the joy of self-confidence and will make a creative addition to any shelf.

Takeaway: Artists and misfits alike will appreciate this story’s heartfelt message and colorful world.

Great for fans of: Drew Daywalt’s The Day the Crayons Quit, Diane Alber’s Snippets.

Production grades
Cover: A-
Design and typography: B
Illustrations: A
Editing: A
Marketing copy: A