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Birthday Suit

Birthday Suit

By Olive Senior
Illustrated by Eugenie Fernandes
Interest Age: 4–7
Grade: p–2
Reading Level: Common Core Correlations
CCSS.ELA-Literacy Strand-Reading literature: RF.1-2.4

Reading Level: Lexile AD880L
Hardcover (Picture book) : 9781554513697, 32 pages, February 2012 , 10.03" x 8.70"


Johnny loves nothing better than splashing in the ocean waves—naked.

But Mom says now that he’s four he’s too old to run around without clothes on. She even buys him a pair of overalls with genuine 100 percent child-proof snap fasteners! But they’re no match for Johnny as he wriggles out of them.

Johnny’s father explains that big boys wear clothes. Doesn’t he want to be big like Dad? As Johnny gazes up, he decides that wearing clothes may be a small price to pay to reach such heights. Everyone is happy as Johnny practices putting on his clothes. And now when he runs into the ocean, he makes sure to take his red swimsuit—but that doesn’t necessarily mean he’ll always wear it!

Imbued with the lilt of the Caribbean and featuring illustrations that capture the warmth and humor of the text, this charming picture book is sure to amuse young children—naked or not! 


“This cute book will certainly amuse the younger set and evoke fond (or not so fond) memories in anyone who has had to chase a naked toddler.”

- Word Up, Nerd Up, 04/28/12

“Fernandes’ bright, busy paintings are a good match for the buoyant and ample text, which is full of phonic riffs that make the tale a terrific read-aloud.”

- Kirkus Reviews, *starred review, 02/12

“Olive Senior adds this exuberant, joyously-infused tale for wee clothing anti-enthusiasts to her impressive writing repertoire.”

- Paper Based Bookshop, 08/10/13

“Enthusiastic junior nudists everywhere will unite behind this one.”

- Booklist, 05/12

“Fun and engaging, the poetic use of language rich and lyrical.”

- Resource Links, 04/12

“A fun book to read to children.”

- QFHSA (Quebec Federation of Home and School Associations) News, 03/12

“Comical events will appeal to young children who can identify with strong-willed, independent-thinking Johnny.”

- School Library Journal, 09/12

“Olive Senior . . . lends her poetic flair . . . with snappy sounds and rhythms . . . Eugenie Fernandes adds to the lush scenery with warm, vibrant paintings that exude as much energy as Johnny himself.”

- Foreword Reviews, 04/12

“A lot of parents and kids will be able to relate to this delightful tale of unencumbered toddlerhood!”

- Cozy Little Book Journey, 11/20/12

“This delightful book will elicit giggles from three-to six-year-olds and knowing smiles from parents.”

- Canadian Children’s Book News, 11/12

“The voice of Jamaica is in poet Olive Senior’s lilting prose, and the lively illustrations are painted in Fernandes’s signature child-friendly style.”

- CM Reviews, 05/12

“The story has a lovely rhythm and illustrator Fernandes captures the exuberance of childhood beautifully with her vibrant illustrations.”

- Open Book Toronto, 06/05/12