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4.01  ·  Rating details ·  849 Ratings  ·  167 Reviews
As a boy and his mother move quickly through the city, they're drawn to different things. The boy sees a dog, a butterfly, and a hungry duck while his mother rushes them toward the departing train. It's push and pull, but in the end, they both find something to stop for.

Acclaimed author/illustrator Antoinette Portis' signature style conveys feelings of warmth, curiosity, h
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published July 14th 2015 by Roaring Brook Press
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Rating details
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Feb 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Kids; Parents
This book has text consisting of only three words: 'wait', 'hurry', and 'yes'. The 'plot' is that a mother is leading her little boy by the hand through the city. Even at the end, it is unclear what their end goal or destination was. School? Home? I guess it doesn't matter. It's all about the journey. We don't get to see the starting or ending point.

Each page features either the mom pulling the boy along by the hand, saying urgently “Hurry!” or the boy attempting to stop and appreciate some ever
Edward Sullivan
Oct 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
The conflicting agendas of a mother and a preschooler are beautifully portrayed in this simple but rich visual narrative.
Sep 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Mom is in a hurry. She holds the boy's hand . There are so many beautiful things to look at in the way, the boy keeps asking for stop at everything that catches his attention. But mom really can't stop.

Prettily illustrated and almost wordless, sweet is the best word to define this book. I could see my kids smiling at each page, looking for what was the intriguing thing the boy put his eyes on this time! I could see them relating with this curious little character. They faces saying "I'd have sto
Jul 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A wonderful tale of mother and son on the streets of the city trying to catch a train. All the while seeing all that can be seen.
Anna Fillmore
Sep 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
OMG!!! This picture book is set in Chicago! I am so excited. This never happens. Chicago is not named, but the skyline is recognizable, and I believe it is the Chicago el stop on the brown line. Satisfying rhythm to the back and forth tension between a mother-trying to catch the train- and son - wanting to look at so many interesting things. Brilliant.
Alyson (Kid Lit Frenzy)
In just two words, this perfectly captures the struggle between a busy mom and a curious child.
Pencil, charcoal, and ink illustrations with added digital color show the very different approaches to life of a toddler and his mother. As is typical with many adults, the mother is keenly aware of time and schedules, and keeps pushing her son to hurry. I imagine that she's taken this route one too many times, and like many of us, barely even notices what is around her. Meanwhile, her son is fascinated by everything they pass--the animals, the construction site, and the rain that is falling--an ...more
Sandy Brehl
On the surface, this is a simple concept book about the ongoing struggle between parent (hurry) and child (wait).
But countless complex visual and design elements make this a book of wisdom and love. The bold-line, deep-hued, left-to-right streaming images of a city provide momentum to the parent/child journey, alternating stark white background with saturated pages filled with details young eyes will adore.
This is a sort of love-letter to picture books as a format, in my opinion.
They can be se
Nov 12, 2016 rated it it was ok
Damn these people who feel compelled to control every aspect of their lives, including exactly how many children to have and when, and also feel compelled to book themselves into being busy-busy-busy. Have we still not learned to stop and smell the roses, and to enjoy our time with our child by walking at his pace, noticing the things he notices? Why are books like this still seen as valuable?! *I* certainly don't think so, as I live simply and thankfully every day... and so I did not enjoy this ...more
Danica Midlil
I loved this gentle quiet book. Great reminder that children have different priorities than adults. Just different not worse. They are still finding wonder in all the colorful details in their everyday worlds that will eventually become wallpaper when we all grow into adults who need to get places at specific times. Having a young child is an opportunity to see all those bright, shiny details again. This mom takes the time to see the landscape that her son and she travel everyday. Really well do ...more
Jillian Heise
Some of the most impactful picture books are the ones without many words. Portis uses three words in such a simple way combined with charming illustrations to give a powerful reminder of the need to slow down and appreciate what is around us. For parents and children alike, it is one to share. Reminding he reader of the childlike wonder with which we can see the world. Will pair perfectly with Sidewalk Flowers and Something Extraordinary.
Jun 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing
In this beautifully spare book, a mother and her child hurriedly walk through the city. The boy tries to stop to feed ducks, hold a butterfly, and taste the rain. In this push and pull, the only words they say are "Hurry" and "Wait." At the end, the mother and child find something that is definitely worth a WAIT. I recommend pairing this one with SIDEWALK FLOWERS and LAST STOP ON MARKET STREET.
Adrienne Pettinelli
I especially love the cover. And the mother's outfit. And the texture and color. And the message, even. This is one I keep picking up to look at again.
Aug 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
So well done. I found myself hurrying on the hurry pages and waiting on the wait pages, then going back to see the clues I hurried past.
Mindy Jones
Aug 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
Simple and so sweet.
Aug 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Such a true take on the world seen through a child's eyes and a parent's eyes. I think this is a strong Caldecott contender. Beautifully done!
Laura (Book Scrounger)
Apr 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is a very simple book of few words, about taking the time to look and interact with all the wonderful things you see on your way from here to there--from the perspective of a young child. My two-year-old really enjoyed it.
Stephanie Croaning
The beauty of this book is its simplicity. Using just three words, Antoinette Portis has created a book that shows the push and pull of life as the adult hurries to make the train on time and the child wants to stop and experience the everyday beauty of the world.

The illustrations are created using pencil, charcoal, and ink, with color added digitally. The figures in the story have a thick outline that makes them stand out. What helps carry the story forward is the image of mother and child. The
Dec 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
As a boy and his mother move through an urban setting rushing to get on the train, the little boy just wants to slow down and look at things. There are ducks to feed, an ice cream truck to linger near, a butterfly to try to touch, and much more. Each little item has the boy saying “wait” while the mother says “hurry.” It’s a dance that parents will immediately recognize. A rain storm has them hurrying to put on a raincoat. Just as the pair are about to catch their train successfully though, the ...more
Jul 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: preschool-K
Such a simple idea--stop and look, enjoy the world--and two words for the majority of the book (until the last page when 'yes' is added) but so much to consider and look at in the illustrations. It evens starts on the title page as the boy find a small insect resting atop the letter t on the title. A mother hurries to get somewhere while her son continually says wait and he stops to look and examine. Without stopping, a butterfly would remain hidden amongst blossoms on a shrub, a dog would remai ...more
Jul 08, 2015 added it
Shelves: book-a-day
There was a time when most families did not own three, four or more cars or trucks. (Several of my immediate neighbors with two in the household own four vehicles.) We had one car in my family of four until I was in high school. If my mom needed it to run errands, she would drive my dad to work in the morning and race around until it was time to pick him up. Needless to say before my sister and I were in school, the three of us were in pretty good shape from fast walking or running from place to ...more
Dec 29, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
It’s amazing how much a talented author/illustrated can do with just a few simple words. This wonderful book captures the maddening yet delightful reality of walking down a city block with a small child – everything is a source of wonder and amazement to young eyes, an attitude that is unfortunately largely lost in adulthood. This is actually a lovely book to share at baby times – the text is sparse, but caregivers will appreciate the gentle, evocative illustrations. I can also see using this bo ...more
Claudia  Fett
"Wait" is a sweet, simple picture book about a boy taking in his surroundings and attempting to get his mother to slow down and view the world around them. Each illustration is a double page spread showing the hurried world moving forward and the boy constantly looking back. Antoinette Portis has used pencil, ink, charcoal and a computer to created this inviting picture book. There are only three words in this book: hurry, wait and yes.

This book could be used in a variety of ways:
- Pre K - 1 rea
Dec 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Simplicity at it's finest. In a child's world, life is always in a flurry and hurry. Author/illustrator, Antoinette Portis, shows us the importance of waiting through a child's eyes.

This is a constant struggle between parent and child quite often where the child sees the beauty of just being and enjoying the simpler things in life whereas the adult bustles about through life for things that are so seemingly important. The child shows us that we really do need to WAIT once in a while and just be
Rummanah (Books in the Spotlight)
Wait is a beautiful story. The plot is very simple yet very relatable. A mother and her young son are trying to rush to their morning train. While the mother passes by ordinary events and her sole focus is getting on the train, her son times time to observe all of things around them with a repeatable chime of "Wait" and the mother's response of "Hurry". I love how the images from the mother's perspective flash by like a blur, but for her son's point of view things are much larger and impressive, ...more
Oct 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
A nearly wordless story in which a busy mom is trying to move her young child along, though he keeps getting caught up in the simple joys of life.

Pencil, charcoal and ink illustrations finished digitally. PreK-2.
Aliza Werner
Very few words and more impact than many picture books. Masterful story development centering on slowing down to appreciate the details in daily life. I will use this as a mentor text as I bring mindfulness practice into my classroom again this year. Pair with Sidewalk Flowers.
Feb 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-kids, kids-books
Sweet story and wonderful illustrations.
Dec 19, 2016 rated it really liked it
A lovely book that presents the simple joy of taking the time to enjoy the world.
Becky B
A little boy and his mother are walking through the city headed to the train. They have somewhere to be so his mother is constantly saying hurry, but the boy notices things around him and encourages her to wait and look sometimes. In the end, mom agrees that some things are worth pausing in the midst of hurry to enjoy.

The entire text in this consists of the words "hurry," "wait," or "yes." Usually there is just one word per page, making this very approachable for beginning readers. My niece was
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Antoinette attended the UCLA School of Fine Arts and is a former creative director at Disney. She lives in Southern California.
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