Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Panorama: A Foldout Book by Fani Marceau

Panorama: A Foldout Book
by Fani Marceau
illustrated by Joelle Jolivet
(originally published in France in 2007)
Abrams, 2009
The review copy still lives at Cover to Cover, shown here extended to its full length, but I may have to go back and buy it!

This is a gorgeous, gorgeous book. (Thank you, Beth for taking it out of its shrink wrap so that I could properly swoon!) Each page is a natural scene from a different place around the world, and each scene morphs into the next, linking our world in surprising and wonderful ways. It is a new take on the interconnectedness of our world, and it invites wonder and further exploration by highlighting places beyond the typical: the first four pages show the Ganges River Delta, Bangladesh, India; Mount Katmai, Alaska, United States; Adrar Desert, Sahara, Mauritania; and Cotopaxi Volcano, Andes Mountains, Ecuador.

The return journey, on the backs of the pages, shows the scenes at night and invites the reader to look for changes. Night sends animals into hiding and brings new animals out, people stop working and go home, and if you look carefully, in the picture of Scotland, the Little People come out!

The message at the end reads, "Here you are, back at the start. At the bottom of your pocket, keep a pebble -- a star -- to remind you of the world."

Other books by this illustrator include 365 Penguins, Zoo-ology, and Almost Everything. All are oversized and visually stunning. Jolivet's website is here.


  1. This sounds terrific!

  2. I continue to find it fascinating what artists and writers are doing with the written and illustrated form and when I stumble on something like this, it can take my breath away. Just think of the planning and organizing that went into this book. I'll have to see if they have it at a bookstore near me.
    Thanks for sharing

  3. It sounds utterly FABULOUS!

    Thank you for writing about it.

  4. this looks amazing!

  5. It is quite a lovely book, but I'm surprised not find anyone noting its similarity to Ingri and Edgar Parin d'Aulaire's "Book of Animals."


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