Noodlephant won’t let this stand—Noodlephants can’t survive on sticks and branches, after all. Determined to do something to push back against an unjust law, she and her friends invent a machine that transforms pens into penne, pillows into ravioli, and radiators into radiatori. With that, the pasta parties are back! But that very night, the kangaroos come bounding through the door… ready to enforce their unjust laws.
A zany tale full of pasta puns, friendship, and one Phantastic Noodler, Noodlephant, written by Jacob Kramer and illustrated by K-Fai Steele, explores a community’s response to injustice.
Click here to watch the Noodlephant book trailer.
11" (W) x 9" (H) • 80 pages • HCJ
AWARDS AND REVIEWS
"I love Noodlephant—brilliant & necessary, and the parable we need now." —Dave Eggers, Best-Selling Author, Editor, Publisher, and Co-Founder of 826 National
★ "Accessible sentences are peppered with spurts of couplets, wordplay, and culinary vocabulary. The art is perfect: pen-and-ink and colorful washes show numerous, wide-eyed animal citizens, anthropomorphic and, sometimes, laugh-out-loud funny." —STARRED REVIEW, Kirkus Reviews
“Kramer tackles political oppression with wit, inventiveness, and a love of good food. Noodlephant the elephant is so named by her crowd of friends, who treasure her love of pasta and the way she cooks for every sort of animal—except the kangaroos, who would rather spend their time making unfair laws. Things head downhill when the kangaroos dictate that Elephants must eat only sticks and branches—enjoying pasta means time in the zoo. Throughout, sly verse interludes capture the animals’ subversive spirit: ‘The laws for elephants and shrews/ ...should be the same as those we use,/ for all you wealthy kangaroos.’ Noodlephant and her friends come up with a machine that turns everything into pasta (‘cans into cannelloni, pillows into ravioli’), but their creativity lands Elephant in the zoo. […] Graceful black ink lines and bold color wash by newcomer Steele give the story even more comic force, capturing the joy of Elephant’s parties, the bleakness of her imprisonment, and her satisfaction as she finds a way to outwit her oppressors.” —Publishers Weekly
”It’s about a noodle-loving elephant. It’s about a magic pasta machine. It’s about a community’s response to injustice. It’s 80 pages long. All that is to say it’s unlike any picture book I’ve read in a long time. And it’s great.” —Travis Jonker, 100 Scope Notes
”This book will not only make you crave noodles asap, it’ll make you hungry to go change the world.” —The Reading Ninja, @thereadingninja
“I truly believe that the best way to engage kids with issues of inequality and justice is through story. Noodlephant manages to take on racism, police brutality, and unjust laws in a playful, thought provoking way. The illustrations are detailed and fun. We stumbled upon a reading of this book at the library, and my kids loved it. The authors are really doing something special.” —Mission Branch, San Francisco Public Library
"What's most remarkable about Noodlephant is how it trusts its young readers to recognize broad concepts like injustice, oppression and civil disobedience. It's great silly fun, but also subversive and empathetic and intelligent. It's truly amazing to see students engage with the story and apply its many lessons to their understanding of the world." —David, Skylight Books (Los Angeles, CA)
"This story about standing up to injustice is both charming and resonant!"―Sara Grochowski, McLean & Eakin Booksellers (Petoskey, MI)
"I cannot tell you how much I loved Noodlephant!!!!! . . . Not only do I dig the message, but I am also smitten with the illustrations. There is a long hold list for our copy." — Maria Falgoust, Librarian, International School of Brooklyn (Brooklyn, NY)
"I just love, love, love this book!" —Cindy Derby, Author-Illustrator
”Noodlephant is a fun, wacky look at creative civil disobedience and injustice. The kangaroos are oppressive and mean, forbidding other animals from enjoying anything the kangaroos deem exclusive to their little group. The pushback is creative and silly enough to get a laugh out of readers while encouraging them to think about bullying and exclusion. Occasional verse lends a subversive air that kids will understand and appreciate: ‘When the laws are so unjust, misbehavior is a must!’ Sometimes, you just have to break the rules. K-Fai Steele’s cartoony art is bold, bright, and loaded with noodley fun.” —Rosemary Kiladitis, Mom Read It
“…there’s a long waitlist for students to check out this popular book. I just cannot keep it on the shelf!” —Heather Jones, Librarian, Redmond Elementary School (Redmond, WA)
”A picture book for even the youngest readers about community, social justice, incarceration, and non-violent protest. It's also about cooking, sharing, and eating delicious noodles and features a cute cast of animal characters.” — Marika McCoola, Porter Square Books (Cambridge, MA)
”"A creative way to open the eyes of the kids in our community to the injustices surrounding us. A beautiful parable that encourages even the littlest of readers to use their voice for social change! We LOVED having Jacob and K-Fai in the store to read to our customers. The Q&A and discussions following the book were encouraging, engaging and challenging. This book should be on all bookshelves in every home, classroom, and library!" —Jess Tonti, Marketing Coordinator, SEED People's Market
”"[Our students] loved the story and were able to make such great connections to the MLK study we just finished, and I know they will be able to draw from the story and make deep connections as we launch our Black History and Black Lives Matter unit—this is the deepest compliment. I and other teachers are always searching for books that can serve as mirrors for our students and Noodlephant does that while remaining engaging and age appropriate." —Alisa Rodgers-Taylor, K/1 Teacher, Leschi Elementary School (Seattle, WA)
”Carbs. Pachyderms. Community organizing. What more do you need? Jacob and K-Fai delighted adults and kiddos alike when they came in to the store for story time. While a brief but heated debate over favorite pasta sprang up between our youngest customers, all assembled agreed that Noodles Are Tasty and the kangaroos had been Very Mean, which is Not Okay. And, perhaps, a little more resolve to stand up against injustice seeped out into the world.” —Lilly Cantwell, University Bookstore (Seattle, WA)