Friday, February 26, 2010

Passing by by Yona Tepper; Andy and Sam by Liesbet Slegers

I have two seek and find, or interactive picture books to present to you today!
First, Yona Tepper's Passing By. A little girl stands on her city balcony and watches the busy life of the city as people, animals, and vehicles come and go.
On the down side, the text in this picture book is very uneven, choppy, and flat "Who made that noise? Who honked its horn, 'beep beep?' It's the red car. It honked its horn and then it drove away." Reminiscent of Dick and Jane, isn't it? The pattern of questions varies on each page, making the text even more confusing. It's hard to tell if this is just poorly written or a bad translation - Hebrew is not an easy language to translate into English, in my limited experience. I wasn't able to find any other picture books by the translator, Dr. Deborah Duthman, to compare.

BUT before you cross this off your order list, there is good news! The reason why I am happy to add this to my collection, why I would recommend it, and why the text isn't actually "bad" that it is a perfect story for toddlers and preschoolers! If you think of the text as a list of suggestions for interactive questions, it makes much more sense. The illustrations are chunky and full of life and color and children will love looking for the different things passing by in each spread. I suggest skimming through the text before storytime to get an idea of questions to ask and then doing this book freestyle! If you'd like to try reading wordless books in storytime but are nervous about getting started, this story will give you a good idea of how to involve children in "reading" a wordless picture book.

Verdict: Recommended!

Passing By by Yona Tepper, illustrated by Gil-Ly Alon Curiel, translated by Dr. Deborah Guthman.
ISBN: 978-1935279365; Published January 2010 by Kane Miller; Review copy provided by the publisher through Raab Associates

Next, we have an import from the Netherlands, a delightful seek and find picture book. We all know how much kids love searching for things in stories! Think I Spy and Where's Waldo....this is perfect for the younger crowd who aren't quite ready for the more intricate seek and find books but are tired of board books. Each colorful spread gives the reader an opportunity to find Andy's cat, Sam, and then offers a list of questions that include counting, finding colors, comparisons, and more! There is a collection of the various spreads at the back with colored dots on the different objects, if you really, really can't find something! Another nice thing about this book is the wide variety of objects and difficulty level, so the book can be enjoyed by toddlers through kindergarteners. This is a perfect book for one on one enjoyment or to absorb a bored child for a long, long time. This book is giving off series vibes to me and I hope to see more Andy and Sam books!

Verdict: Highly recommended!

Andy and Sam: Hide-and-Seek by Liesbet Slegers.
ISBN: 978-1935279358; Published January 2010 by Kane Miller; Review copy provided by the publisher through Raab Associates

1 comment:

Playing by the book said...

Being a bilingual Dutch-English household we've a lot of books by Liesbet Slegers - her books are normally a good bet for little ones.