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The Perfectly Purple Sneakers

Children/Young Adult; General Fiction (including literary and historical); (Market)

Juliette LOVES purple, especially her NEW perfectly purple sneakers. She eagerly wears her sneakers to school. As the day goes by, her sneakers become not so new and not so purple. They get dirty, painted, torn, and even jellied. It's not easy to look on the bright side of unexpected and unhappy events. But Juliette's upbeat attitude, along with the encouragement of the people around her, give her the confidence she needs to see that those not so new and not so purple sneakers are, in every other way, absolutely perfect.
Amazon Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5 starsI

By MB on September 14, 2014

Format: Hardcover|Verified Purchase

An important lesson for kids to learn, the author shows how unfortunate events can have a bright side. Juliette is a darling character who's new sneakers get dirty. Instead of choosing to cry, she learns from her mom, teacher, and friends to see the positive side of life. The characters are wonderful, the author is brilliant. A great book for all kids and for the classroom!

5.0 out of 5 stars What a fun read!

By Tanya G on August 18, 2014

A delightful book that will capture readers of all ages. Juliette is a spunky heroine with the right attitude who learns valuable lessons in her adventure-filled day with her perfectly purple sneakers. What a fun read! The art is amazing and the quality of the book superior. Highly recommend to all.

5.0 out of 5 starsI

By tlat on October 19, 2014

This book is so fun! I think all kids at some point have a clothing item they always want to wear. It's a great kids book and the illustrations are so colorful! Don't forget to find the hidden sneakers !

5.0 out of 5 stars

ByYoung Cheyon November 2, 2014

Format: Hardcover|Verified Purchase

Kids were so excited when the book arrived. Both my 7 and 4 year olds absolutely love the colorful pages and words. This is a great book for kids to enjoy anytime!

5.0 out of 5 stars

By MKL on March 7, 2015

Format: Hardcover|Verified Purchase

This book has a really good message for kids. It's fun to read and teaches kids to look at life's mishaps in a positive way. Great illustrations! Highly recommend!

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5.0 out of 5 stars

By Pat Abercrombieon August 25, 2015

Format: Hardcover|Verified Purchase

My grandson loved this book! We read it together and then searched for the hidden sneakers on every page. One of my favorites to share with the grandkids!

Central California Life Magazine

The names on the picture books: children's authors in the Valley by Andrew Veihmeyer

Most of us fondly remember our favorite picture books: the rich, colorful illustrations, the exuberant characters and the stories that live in our imaginations. But what about the authors? When we were young, we probably never considered that several published children’s writers make their home in the San Joaquin Valley.

“I twirl left. I twirl right. I jump high. I kick low. I want to wear these sneakers everywhere I go!”

That's Juliette talking in Kathy Goosev Howell's “The Perfectly Purple Sneakers” (Giggling Goose Publishing).  In this colorful story, Juliette learns to look on the positive side of life during a sad day at school when her favorite sneakers get dirty. Paint drips on them during art class, then jelly from a sandwich at lunch, among other things. But those are just marks of experience say her friends, family and teachers. Paint makes those purple sneakers artistic, and jelly makes them extra sweet.

Howell was born to Russian immigrants who came to California when her father had the chance to work in agriculture in the Central Valley. The family saved their money until they could purchase a farm in Kerman.

“We sewed our own clothes, grew and canned our own food, everything,” Howell said.

As a child, she enjoyed playing with languages, combining English and Russian to make her own words. She thrived on reading quirky and creepy stories, but, along with those simple pleasures, hard work was always part of her life. That ethic has followed her throughout her career.

“Dream big, work hard. That's my motto,” she said.

Howell, who has over 25 years of teaching experience, is currently a substitute teacher in Clovis as well as a curriculum writer. She also visits classrooms to teach children about the creative writing process and its challenges.

The inspiration for the book's character of Juliette came quite naturally.

“Of course! It's me with red hair,” Howell said.

And just why did Juliette love her sneakers so much? Probably because Howell loves them, too.

"I enjoy wearing sneakers and looking at all the colors and styles that are available for people to wear, especially the unusual ones,” she said. “That's how the book got started."

The “Perfectly Purple Sneakers” was released earlier this year. The author is pleased with early responses. 

“If somebody opens your book and someone laughs or someone cries, you know you've done a good job,” Howell said. 

She is already working on a sequel.


The Day of the Reader event was put on through the collaborative efforts of Felicia Gonzalez, Terry School Library Technician and Jeromy Winter, Teacher Librarian and with the support of the great teaching staff at Terry Elementary School. We are also thankful for the support our head librarian, Maria Petropulos, gives us in putting together these types of activities for students. As part of the events we also made and served breakfast and lunch to our special guests and all of Terry Staff. These efforts of the library staff, teachers, and community members are to get children excited about reading, writing, and learning. 

Kathy Goosev Howell, was able to get the students excited about reading, through singing and dancing with the students, reading her books to them, and even doing a bit of magic. She is a highly energetic presenter who tailored her presentation to each grade level. All students learned about writing through her motivating presentations. Kathy discussed the process of writing, editing, and publishing a books. She spoke about and showed examples of a book before it is bound. She generously gave each teacher either a CD or one of her books. She also had a drawing for each class where she gave away books and CDs to students. She did a fantastic job at getting the Terry Elementary School students excited about reading and writing. 

Our guest readers also did a fantastic job at motivating the students. They not only read books, but spoke about the importance of reading and becoming educated. The guest readers went into classrooms to read a variety of books to the students. After reading, the student were able to ask the readers questions about their jobs. We really appreciate these readers for the valuable time they spent with students.

Some students who won books during the drawing came back the next day and said they read the entire chapter book. They couldn’t wait to tell us about the mystery behind the story Skoob. This excitement for reading shows us that the collective efforts of everyone involved was well worth while. 

Special Guest Author:
Kathy Goosev Howell - Author of the books The Perfectly Purple Sneakers, Skoob, and Skoob Revisited and coauthor of the music CDs Rock Out with Spelling and Rock Out with Spelling Volume 2.