Any Way You Stack It: Bob Staake Books are the Best!

A Wynk, a Blynk, and a Nod to Books by Bob Staake

Bob Staake has written and/or illustrated over fifty books for children. In addition to his many children’s books, he is also a political cartoonist and highly successful commercial artist. He has worked on everything from greeting cards to magazines covers. He has illustrated for The New Yorker, Mad Magazine, Time, and The Washington Post. And most recently, he designed the artwork for KCPL’s 2017 Summer Reading Program! Bob’s graphically styled illustrations are bright and engaging. His lively text and colorful images seem to leap from the page.  His style is often described as retro yet it has modern appeal.  We can’t possibly include all of his books in this post, so we’ve chosen to highlight a few that he has both written and illustrated.


We had the pleasure of meeting Bob in the summer of 2014 at a children’s literature conference at the Mazza Museum in Findlay, Ohio. Bob was one of the keynote speakers at that conference. We were doing a presentation on the history of The New York Times Best Illustrated Children’s Books award. By coincidence, Bob’s The Red Lemon had won this prestigious award in 2006. He actually sat in on our presentation and offered some interesting commentary. We were thrilled when we learned that he was designing this year’s summer reading artwork.

We’re happy to introduce you to Bob and his books. Grab a “staake” … you can’t go wrong!


Picture Books written and illustrated by Bob Staake

Beachy and Me

This newest book is the tale of a bored and lonely little girl who meets a great big whale. The rhyming text adds to the rollicking fun as the two become great friends.





This wordless picture book is an eloquent tale of friendship that was met with stellar reviews when published in 2013.




The Donut Chef

A competition between two bakers leads to some pretty interesting concoctions, until a little girl asks for just a plain glazed donut.




The First Pup: The Real Story of How Bo Got to the White House

This is a whimsical look at how Barack Obama’s Portuguese water dog came to live at the White House.




Hello, Robots

When several robots get caught in a rain deluge, their circuits get crossed.  Confusion and comedy ensue.




Look! A Book!

Rhyming clues invite the reader to search for hidden items on each page in this clever and engaging picture book.




Look! Another Book!

Look, it’s another entertaining seek and find book. This is the sequel to Look! A Book! and offers just as much fun.




My Pet Book

A little boy wants to find the perfect pet, and a bright red book fits the bill – it won’t run away, doesn’t have fleas, and won’t ever need a bath. However, adventure ensues when the maid accidentally gives the book to charity.



The Red Lemon

Farmer McPhee discovers a red lemon among a sea of yellow that stretches for miles. He tosses it across the ocean where it lands on a deserted island. Two hundred years later the red lemon trees yield a delicacy sought after by many. The New York Times named this book one of the ten Best Illustrated Children’s Books of the Year in 2006.



This is Not a Pumpkin

With the help of simple riddles, young readers are encouraged to take a second look at the pumpkin on each page and figure out what they are really meant to be.


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