Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Review: Black? White! Day? Night! by Laura Vaccaro Seeger



Black? White! Day? Night! written and illustrated by Laura Vaccaro
Seeger. Roaring Brook, 2006 (1-59643-185-7) $16.95


Simple? Complicated! Or as the best opposite books always are, both. Nothing is what it seems in this very clever book, in which broad, childlike pictures framed in bright primary colors become their own opposites when a flap is lifted. A change in perspective makes "near?" into "far!"; a face that seems "sad?" is actually just the nose on one that is quite "happy!"; even a black square "nothing?" is revealed to be part of "something!" A nitpicky reader will notice that the premise falters once or twice, and since the book is quite fat, I wonder why the less succesful combinations weren't just left out. But that is a small flaw in an otherwise cunningly simple and straightforwardly complicated book. (3 & up

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