Thursday, March 29, 2012

Wordless (or nearly so)

The Giant Seed
by Arthur Geisert
Enchanted Lion Books, June 2012
review copy provided by the publisher

I am a huge fan of wordless picture books, and Arthur Geisert is a master of the form.

This followup to Ice (reviewed here) is a story of survival, collaboration and dandelion seeds. Yes, dandelions. It seems like the perfect season to look at those plants we think of as pests with wonder and admiration as we imagine the small worlds that would be saved by those magical floaty seeds...

Little Bird
by Germano Zullo
illustrated by Albertine
translated from the French by Claudia Zoe Bedrick
Enchanted Lion Books, 2012
review copy provided by the publisher

It's high time we here in the U.S. started paying better attention to books published internationally.

Take for instance, Little Bird, winner of the 2011 Prix Sorcières for illustration (the French Caldecott). Yes, the book is visually stunning. It's clear why it won an award for illustrations.

But it's a great story, too. About the small things in life. About keeping your eyes open for the little ways that make every day different, unique, and a day to be treasured.

This is not quite a wordless book. The words stay tucked down at the bottom of the page in the white margin around the illustration. The words are like a quiet commentary that complement the cinematic pictures. This is one I'd love to read to kids of many ages to see how their reactions differ.

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