Books by Suzanne Morris
A Trapezoid is NOT a Dinosaur!
All the shapes want a part in Triangle's play, Shapes in Space. Square has all the right angles, Circle is on a roll, and Star shines the brightest. Trapezoid just doesn't fit in. Isn't that some kind of dinosaur? Determined to get a part, Trapezoid acts like all the other shapes, but must discover a way to use his own unique strengths to help make the show a blast.
Selected as one of Betsy Bird's Favorite
“If you’ve a kid that was a fan of Kelly Bingham’s Z Is for Moose, this is sort of its shapey equivalent. Triangle is conducting auditions for a play and Trapezoid is keeps popping up to interrupt. Though it’s often dismissed, the book sets up a situation where the reader’s sympathies fall with the much maligned shape. And the ending is awfully shape-y indeed. Kirkus said of it, “An effective bridge from simple shape identification to more specific geometric facts.” Uh, yeah. What they said.”
“All the shapes are putting on a play. Circle will be the moon, Triangle will be a rocket, and Star will be a…um, star. But how can Trapezoid help?? Trapezoids are dinosaurs, right?? On its surface, this is a simple story about accepting others for their differences. But it’s greatest potential is for a STEAM-powered storytime, as each shape describes how they are different, using terms like parallel lines and right angles. There are also a ton of shape puns, which may be corny, but actually require an advanced understanding of each shape to comprehend, which create further opportunities for discussion. An author’s note asks some great critical thinking questions about each shape, making it an overall great resource. Artwork is simple and light, and reflects the intended audience. Interestingly, the shapes often stand on a pedestal that’s shaped like a trapezoid, which is a clever touch, and shows the potential of the titular character in the real world. VERDICT This title is ideal for curricular support. A solid addition for most collections.”
—School Library Journal
“Illustrations are comics-style, with frequent paneling and word balloons. Sticklike appendages and a hand-drawn style make the shapes surprisingly expressive . . . An effective bridge from simple shape identification to more specific geometric facts.”
The first draft of this story was created when Suzanne's daughter was learning about trapezoids in pre-school, she recounts in this interview with Dylan Teut, popular children’s literature blogger and executive director of the Plum Creek Children’s Literacy Festival.