© 2012 Thomas F. Yezerski


Pinch and Dash Make Soup

  • written by Michael J. Daley
  • illustrated by Thomas F. Yezerski
  • Charlesbridge Publishing, 2012
  • 48 pp., full-color illustrations
  • ages 5-8
  • ISBN-10: 0-374-34913-4
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-374-34913-4


Pinch is hungry, but he is too lazy to cook anything or walk all the way to the Chat and Chew. He imagines his good friend Dash is making something delicious, so he goes next door in hopes of being invited for lunch. Dash is cooking, alright, but he is making only “skinny soup.” The two buddies debate what goes into a good soup, and argue about each ingredient they add. Then Pinch goes a step further when Dash isn’t looking. Hilarity ensues! Pinch and Dash Make Soup is the first of two easy-to-read chapter books about friends with endearing personalities and strong opinions.


Newly independent readers will enjoy the light humor while tackling the more difficult words repeated throughout the text (simmering, slurped, refrigerator). Although Pinch and Dash are rather nondescript animals, they portray the full range of emotions friends experience when they must ultimately compromise. Here’s hoping more servings of this charming duo will make it to the (reading) table.
— Kirkus Reviews
Suitable for confident readers who aren’t ready to tackle chapter books, the story is told through short sentences and plenty of clues in the pictures.
— School Library Journal
Beginning readers who need a lot of flash and action will not find it here, but those youngsters who appreciate a quieter approach will find this enjoyable . . . For instructional use, or for kids who like their entertainment on the mild side, this is a solid title.
— Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

© 2012 by Thomas F. Yezerski


The editor and designer wanted me to imagine Pinch and Dash on my own. They believed that I should know what looks good, because I’m an illustrator. I like that responsibility, but it is also a lot of pressure. I wanted Michael (and you!) to like how the characters look.Many readers don’t know that authors and illustrators don’t usually work together on books. In fact, they may never even meet! That was the case for this book, because Michael Daley lives far from me, in Vermont. He wrote about these great characters in his story, but he never described what they looked like.

© 2012 by Thomas F. Yezerski

Just like Pinch and Dash disagreeing on making a good soup, the designer and I could not agree what made a good character. We never argued, but I showed her at least twenty different characters before she saw two that she liked. You can see the earliest sketches in the drawing on this page. In that drawing, Pinch is actually the tall one, and Dash is the short one. So, they have changed a lot. I expect they will keep changing as I get to know them better with each book.