Orange feels miserably lonely because nothing rhymes with his name. Fig rhymes with “pig,” Banana rhymes with “cabana,” and even Lychee has a rhyming pair (none other than Friedrich Nietschze).
Everyone has a match. Except for Orange.
This is a very real, universal silent pain point—at some point, we’ve all been Orange. There’s a tremendous amount of societal pressure for people to have a match, to fit in. Perhaps the pressure is hardest to handle during childhood and adolescence, when your collective experiences tell you that the approval of others matters the most.
But the pressure never ends; it merely takes on other forms. In adulthood, there’s relentless pressure to have the perfect partner, to be in the perfect job, to live in a perfect house decorated with perfectly matching Christmas lights…”just like everyone else.” And you wonder if there’s something wrong with you if you don’t match up.
Nothing Rhymes with Orange is by far the weirdest, non-linear story I’ve read in a long time (especially with the intermission from Pear, Apple, and Grape). But if you really get the point of the story, you see that this storytelling “technique” is the entire point.
This book breaks the standards of normal storytelling because this pressure to match, to fit in, is all in our head. This book is proof that there are other ways to tell stories, other ways to illustrate characters, other ways to typeset a picture book (it’s hand-lettered).
There’s not a single book on the market that matches or “rhymes” with this book. And yet, it’s here. It’s boldly itself, bravely on its own. It stands out because it is outstanding.
Just like Orange discovers that he is outstanding—and that being unique can be worth celebrating.
Nothing rhymes with Orange, and there’s nothing wrong with that.