Hi, Koo!: A Year of Seasons : A Year of Seasons

by Jon J Muth, Illustrated By Jon J Muth

Scholastic Press
March 2014

Ages 4 – 8 . Grades PreK – 3

Library of Congress: 2012040378

Lexile measure: NP

DRA: 24

Guided Reading: M

Eating warm cookies
on a cold day
is easy

water catches
every thrown stone
skip skip splash

With a featherlight touch and disarming charm, Jon J Muth--and his delightful little panda bear, Koo--challenge readers to stretch their minds and imaginations with twenty-six haikus about the four seasons.
Jon J Muth

Jon J Muth, renowned in the world of graphic novels, won an Eisner Award for his paintings in the graphic novel, The Mystery Play by Grant Morrison. He’s partnered with Neil Gaiman on The Sandman: The Wake, Walter and Louise Simonson on Havoc & Wolverine: Meltdown, and J. M. DeMatteis on Moonshadow and Silver Surfer. His enchanting picture books include his Caldecott Honor Book Zen Shorts and four companion books featuring Stillwater the Panda. His book The Three Questions, based on a short story by Tolstoy, was called "quietly life-changing" by the New York Times Book Review. And the Horn Book called Jon's Stone Soup "delicious and satisfying." His exquisitely beautiful books have been translated into more than 15 languages and are cherished by readers of all ages. Jon lives in New York State with his wife and their four children.


  • Praise for ZEN SHORTS

    -Caldecott Honor Book, Charlotte Zolotow Award, Parents' Choice Award, Book Sense Book of the Year, Bank Street Best Book of the Year

    * "Every word and image comes to make as perfect a picture book as can be." -- KIRKUS REVIEWS, starred review
    * "Like The Three Questions (2002), Muth's latest is both an accessible, strikingly illustrated story and a thought-provoking meditation." -- BOOKLIST, starred review

    Praise for ZEN TIES

    -NEW YORK TIMES Bestseller
    -NAIBA Best Book of the Year

    * "Stillwater . . . continues to combine his slow-moving grace with genuine spiritual tranquility. Muth's brush is as sure as ever. . . . From a religious tradition that makes no theological demands and that will be unfamiliar to most readers, Stillwater offers a model of pure saintliness, and children will instantly respond to him." -- PUBLISHERS WEEKLY, starred review

    Praise for ZEN GHOSTS

    "Stunning." -- USA TODAY; featured in recommended list of Halloween books
    * "Haunting in multiple senses of the word, this tale should captivate thoughtful readers, as Muth's watercolors convey a world of infinite possibility and gentle enchantment." -- PUBLISHERS WEEKLY, starred review

  • Praise for Hi, Koo! : A Year of Seasons :

    - 2015 ALA Notable Children’s Books List Award Winner

    Kirkus Starred Review
    Long before photography, poets took to haiku, the poetic equivalent of a snapshot, and painters to the suggestive medium of watercolor to capture the essence of moments in nature.

    Caldecott Honoree Muth (Zen Shorts, 2005) employs both, with the help of his playful panda Koo, to present 26 moments through the seasons. Though light in tone and geared toward pre-reader eyes and interests, the mostly outdoor scenes Muth depicts command serious attention from all. The first page simultaneously demonstrates both Muth’s adherence to haiku’s three-line form rather than its traditional five-seven-five syllabic sequence and his exquisite use of white space. “Autumn, / are you dreaming / of new clothes?” reads the text as Koo reaches up to try to catch a handful of falling leaves. One of the few scenes referencing indoor living hilariously comes in early spring: “too much TV this winter / my eyes are square / let’s go Out and play.” Two children and Koo stand in front of a large television, the whites of the children’s eyes boxed and zombielike and Koo’s, two solid black squares. A more reflective, deeply moving spring moment finds the children alone with a book in the woods, Muth’s delicate watercolor and subtle inking deftly suggesting the forest’s shifting scope.

    Throughout, condensed poetic image coupled with spare illustration yields huge effect; in a word, magical.



Jacketed Hardcover / Smyth

ISBN: 9780545166683

32pp. | 9-½ x 8-½