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The Days Crayons Quit Summary

5 min read ⌚ 

The Days Crayons Quit PDFDuncan wants to draw.

But he has nothing to draw with.

His crayons decided to leave their “job positions” because he was over or under-using them.

So, Duncan has to find a way to make amends with his crayons, in order to be able to draw again.

How will he do that? Will the crayons come back?

Who Should Read “The Days Crayons Quit”? And Why?

“The Day Crayons Quit” is a children’s book about a little boy named Duncan and his box of crayons, who one day decide to go on strike because they are not satisfied with how they are used.

Duncan tries to find a way to solve this problem, in order to keep his crayons happy and be able to paint again.

We recommend this book to all parents, as well as to kindergarten teachers who are searching for some new stories to tell.

Drew Daywalt and Oliver Jeffers Biography

Drew DaywaltDrew Daywalt is a Holywood screenwriter, living in California. “The Day the Crayons Quit” is his first attempt at writing children’s books.

Oliver Jeffers is an award-winning Australian illustrator of children’s books. He currently lives in New York and has penned twelve books since the start of his career.


First things first.

“The Day the Crayons Quit” is actually not a book about crayons that quit – but about crayons that have issues and complain about them to little Duncan.

The story goes like this:

Duncan is a little boy who has a desire to draw. But when he takes out his crayon box and opens it, he is surprised but what he sees.

The box is empty. His crayons are all gone!

But it is not that someone took them, but they decided to leave by themselves. They are on strike!

Behind them, they left little papers with Duncan’s name all over them, on which they wrote all the issues they faced and all the trouble they had with the way they were being used.

For example, Red is exhausted because every Christmas and Valentine’s, everyone grabs it and colors everything with it: Santa’s, hearts et cetera. I mean, you would be too, right?

Blue is also overused, and feels physical consequences of this – it is becoming stubby and short.

White, on the other hand, is very depressed, because it is rarely if ever, used (perhaps this is the issue I understand the most).

So is pink.

Purple hates that it is forced to color outside of the lines, and thinks that if it has to do it one more time, it will “lose it.”

Grey just wants to color something small – it has had enough of big things.

Orange and Yellow are in a fight and cannot come to a conclusion about the color of the sun, and which one should be used for it (now I am forced to think about this too).

And then, there is Peach, which Duncan left undressed when he accidentally destroyed and unwrapped its wrapper. So it refuses to come out of its box, I mean how can it, it doesn’t even wear underwear!

Each of the letters is accompanied by a crayon drawing in a children’s style. These monochromatic, but bright and vividly colored drawings jump off the white background (uh-oh, do not tell white we said this!).

These drawings are extremely cute, and it is interesting how the illustrator managed to keep the kid’s unskillfulness in painting.

There are of course problems with the book. For example, as you will notice, first the title is misleading (as we already said, no one actually quit), and second, the problems of the crayons (overuse or underuse) are repeating and overlapping. The only peach has a different issue.

The letters the crayons have written are not connected in an actual story but are just a collection of complaints, so the fact that they could be read in any order without doing something to the story means that there is no build-up in tension.

Also, when the ending comes, we notice that Duncan tries to please the crayons, and so uses Black to paint the beach, and then gives Beige and White new things they could color, but he does not fix all the problems of the other crayons.

In fact, I could not help but notice that Red, Blue, and Grey did not have their problems solved at all.

The Days Crayons Quit Epilogue

Duncan feels bad for his crayons. He does not want them to be sad; he just wants to keep them happy!

That is why he decides that the next time he has an assignment to paint a really colorful one. So then, nothing is in the same color that it is supposed to be.

Actually, that is a bad word: “supposed.”

Let me fix it: nothing is the color it usually is.

But the end is rewarding for him too. By creating something completely unconventional he not only made his crayons happy but also got praise from the teacher for being really creative.

Duncan’s creativity knows no bounds. Determined to reconcile with his crayons, he embarks on a mission to innovate.

Gathering unconventional materials like recycled paper, fabric scraps, and even vegetable peels, Duncan transforms his art assignments into vibrant collages bursting with color and texture.

With each masterpiece, he celebrates the unique hues and qualities of his crayons, showing them that they are valued for more than just their traditional roles.

As his artwork gains recognition for its ingenuity, Duncan discovers that true creativity knows no boundaries—and neither do his beloved crayons.

Through this journey of reinvention, Duncan not only brings joy to his crayons but also learns the invaluable lesson that creativity flourishes when rules are challenged and expectations are defied.

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“The Days Crayons Quit Quotes”

It's me, RED crayon. WE NEED to talk. You make me work harder than any of your other crayons. Click To Tweet I'm tired of being called light brown or dark tan because I am neither. I am BEIGE, and I am proud. Click To Tweet It's not fair that Brown gets all the bears, ponies and puppies while the only things I get are turkey dinners (if I'm lucky) and wheat, and let's be honest - when was the last time you saw a kid excited about coloring wheat? Click To Tweet Baby penguins are gray, you know. So are very tiny rocks. Pebbles. How about one of those once in a while to give me a break? Click To Tweet

Our Critical Review

“The Day the Crayons Quit” was a fun book to read.

It is a children’s book, so I am guessing you are reading this summary because you consider reading this to your child. Children will love it.

I know that I would make my parents read this to me many times if I was a child.

For adults, on the other hand, it is satisfying because it is different.

When was the last time that you took a children’s book in your hands and decided to read it “just because”?

Probably long ago. So, this will be a breath of fresh air for you.

Of course, the book has some problems which I already mentioned before, but that does not make it any worse. It is a children’s book – and all things are allowed in the reality of children.

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