Cover image for Potato pants! / Laurie Keller.
Potato pants! / Laurie Keller.
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Henry Holt and Company, 2018.

Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : colour illustrations ; 30 cm.
Potato is very excited to buy a pair of pants on sale at Lance Vance's Fancy Pants Store, but when he sees Eggplant, who pushed him the day before, he is afraid to go in.


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
KEL Book Easy Collection

On Order



A potato and his eggplant nemesis struggle to find the perfect pants in this hilarious, heartwarming tale of forgiveness by bestselling Geisel-Award winning creator Laurie Keller.

Potato is excited because today--for one day only-- Lance Vance's Fancy Pants Store is selling . . .POTATO PANTS!

Potato rushes over early, but just as he's about to walk in, something makes him stop. What could it be? Find out in this one-of-a-kind story about misunderstandings and forgiveness, and--of course--Potato Pants!

A Christy Ottaviano Book

This title has Common Core connections.

Author Notes

Laurie Keller is the acclaimed author-illustrator of Do Unto Otters , Arnie, the Doughnut , The Scrambled States of America , and Open Wide: Tooth School Inside , among numerous others. She grew up in Muskegon, Michigan, and always loved to draw, paint and write stories. She earned a B.F.A. at Kendall College of Art and Design, then worked at Hallmark as a greeting card illustrator for seven-and-a-half years, until one night she got an idea for a children's book. She quit her job, moved to New York City, and soon had published her first book. She loved living in New York, but she has now returned to her home state, where she lives in a little cottage in the woods on the shore of Lake Michigan.

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

In this offbeat picture book, the clothes make the... tuber? That's how Potato sees things, barely containing his excitement, even doing the Robot (well, "PO-bot") before rushing down to the one-day Potato Pants sale at Lance Vance's Fancy Pants Store. ("I want a stripey pair just like the ones in the window, with stripey suspenders for added stripey-ness!") But his enthusiasm quickly deflates when he sees Eggplant, who knocked him down the day before. Potato's resulting anxiety over entering the store unfolds over spot illustrations that show emotive, newly trousered 'taters and Potato attempting to take his business elsewhere in comic talk bubbles containing amusing asides. Just when all hope of scoring a pair of pants seems lost, Eggplant and Potato clear up their misunderstandings, and Potato becomes a dud-less spud no longer. The story by Keller (We Are Growing!), buoyed by her kinetic mixed-media compositions (including potato stamps), blends humor and a theme of forgiveness. Final pages pay tribute to designer Tubérto and his Potato Pants collection. Ages 4-8. Agent: Steven Malk, Writers House. (Oct.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

New York Review of Books Review

FRIENDS, I BRING YOU DELIGHTS! Glittery, silly, rambunctious delights. Five new humorous children's books offer young readers a plethora of pleasure, plus pants for potatoes. Though very different from one another, four of the five feature classic children's book imagery in one form or another. The fifth features, as I said, potato pants. IN KING ALICE (Feiwel and Friends, 32 pp., $17.99; ages 4 to 8), Matthew Cordell, who won the 2017 Caldecott Medal for "Wolf in the Snow," captures the joy (for kids) and frequent exasperation (for parents) of the dreary, slushy indoor snow day. On a blustery day off from school, young Alice is determined to fill her hours with adventure, enlisting her willing, but bedraggled, dad into the fun. After declaring herself king ("You mean queen," suggests her father. "No! King!" says Alice), Her Highness sets out to cram every ounce of fun from their indoor family time, capturing ah of it in a book-within-a-book recounting her adventures. Not even a timeout for the crime of accidental unicorn bopping deters from the fun with Dad. Cordell's art is lively and especially funny when presented from the king's crayons. Children may enjoy the fact that even a Caldecott Medal winner is not above a little gastrointestinal humor (this child certainly did). Alice's mother and baby brother are also along for the ride. Parents will laugh in recognition at the household chaos busy young minds can create during stretches of unexpected indoor time. DAVID EZRA STEIN'S INTERRUPTING CHICKEN AND THE ELEPHANT OF SURPRISE (Candlewick, 48 pp., $16.99; ages 4 to 8) reunites readers with their inquisitive feathered friend from the Caldecott Honor book "Interrupting Chicken." This time, Chicken returns from school excited to read with her father. Why? Because her teacher, Mrs. Gizzard, has told her that every good story has an "elephant of surprise." Her father thinks that perhaps Chicken means something else, but, as we learned in "King Alice," fathers are easily confused. (It wasn't "Queen" Alice, nor is it the "element of surprise.") Chicken knows precisely what she's looking for - she's on an elephant hunt, and she finds one in every story she reads. Did you know, for example, that Rapunzel features a bubbly blue elephant with exquisite blond braids? Now you do. Stein's art is rich, textured and varied. Like "King Alice," this book features stories within stories. Ah with elephants. Lots and lots of elephants, each of them, as advertised, surprising. THOSE WHO love their artwork textured will adore JUST ADD GLITTER (Beach Lane, 32 pp., $17.99; ages 4 to 8), a collaboration between the author Angela DiTerlizzi and the illustrator Samantha Cotterill. On a rainy day, the mail carrier leaves a box on a little girl's stoop. And just in time. She and her cat are feeling "bored and ignored." What better way to "put some shine upon your crown" than an unexpected package of glitter? Within moments, the girl is spreading sparkles everywhere: on her paper crown, paper dinosaurs and stars, and ah over the bedroom rug. If your walls are "looking for glitz," or just a few more "flashy bits," glitter is just the thing for you. The cat, though, seems hip to a problem with which parents are all too familiar: Glitter gets everywhere. Pretty soon they're chin deep in the stuff. After some judicious (and from experience I would say overly optimistic) sweeping, the glitter is gone, with the little girl and cat discovering that you don't need a special delivery to find a little sparkle. With its fun rhymes and blinged-out pages, "Just Add Glitter" will appeal to those young crafts enthusiasts who have never met a surface that couldn't use a little extra razzle-dazzle. A YOUNG KNIGHT guards against frightful creatures in Jon Agee's the wall in the MIDDLE OF THE BOOK (Dial, 40 pp., $17.99; ages 4 to 8), which uses the clever conceit of the book's "gutter" - that space between each set of two pages - as a boundary between ah that is safe on one side, and ah that is scary on the other. Our knight explains to his readers that the brick wall we see there keeps him safe from a scary menagerie of animals. Tigers and rhinos and gorillas - oh my! Yet, the true menace on the other side of the book is a bearded ogre who would undoubtedly "eat me up" if he ever caught our young hero. Thank goodness for the high wall protecting him. But something seems to be happening on his "safe" side ... something that may require the knight to rethink everything he thought he knew about barriers and who resides on the other side. Agee is the creator of many acclaimed books including "Milo's Hat Trick" and "It's Only Stanley," and this deceptively simple story offers a genuine lesson in the value of all creatures, great and small. Whatever they may look like, oftentimes our biggest fears come from the uncertainty of not being able to see across a boundary. And sometimes, the greatest dangers are right in front of our own two eyes. FINALLY, I PROMISED potato pants, and that is exactly what you're going to get. Laurie Keller's whimsical potato pants: (Holt, 32 pp., $16.99; ages 4 to 8) tells the tale of the one day - the only day - in which Lance Vance's Fancy Pants Store is selling potato pants. A horde of naked potatoes rushes to the store by "spud bus" and "tuber Uber" to grab those tuber trousers because "once they're gone, they're gone! " Unfortunately for our hero, a big, purple eggplant has trespassed into the store, the same eggplant who rudely shoved our hero out of the way the previous day. Now, potato is worried that the eggplant will see him again and he will once again suffer at the hands of that bullying aubergine. Meanwhile, ah the good potato pants are flying off the racks. How will our potato pal get his pants? As in "The Wall in the Middle of the Book," Keller presents a worstcase scenario and gradually dispels the fear. Might he have mistaken the eggplant's intentions? There's plenty of silly illustrations and attractive potato pants to keep chuckling readers turning pages to the end. MICHAEL IAN BLACK'S latest picture book is "I'm Sad," illustrated by Debbie Ridpath Ohi.