As the poignancy of Chicken’s nonarrival settles in (readers see a "Summer RENTAL" sign on his cabin), Mackintosh deftly delivers a satisfying conclusion as the narrator and Mary Ann begin to bond. Mackintosh’s text perfectly captures the timelessness of childhood summer, and his scribbly illustrations (done in pen, pencil, ink, watercolor, and kraft paper) conjure associations of a child’s project sketchbook, the handcrafted look underscored by the old-fashioned-typewriter typeface. Just wonderful.
—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
Readers will sit with the story long after reading it, and will find themselves returning to it again to try to understand it better. This story is a perfect read for a child who is experiencing significant change, especially when it involves a friend moving away or otherwise leaving that child’s life.
—School Library Journal
Teals, grays, and blacks dominate Mackintosh’s scratchy, loose-lined illustrations, with pops of yellow and a vivid sunset-red stealing the show toward the end—not to be outdone by the cleverly designed spread of a lighthouse on a hill that, from a distance, resembles a giant whale. Time marches on, and things change. Chicken may not be returning, but the boy’s sister is pretty cool after all.
—The Horn Book
Waiting for Chicken Smith, written and illustrated by David Mackintosh, is a quirky, touching book that captures the essence of summertime friendships…Innovative visuals and a poignant plot make this story a winner.
Waiting for Chicken Smith is delightfully written and illustrated and explores childhood friendships, anticipation, disappointment, optimism, and change that leads to unexpected magic and joy.
—Reading Eagle (from Kendal Rautzhan’s "Books to Borrow")
In this sandy, warm tableau of summer, a girl savors the sun-drenched beach while her brother is waiting…to relive last year with his friend Chicken Smith. Mackintosh reminds us to savor the past while creating new memories.
—Peter Reynolds, author, Say Something