Monday, April 28, 2008

review: Orange Pear Apple Bear

I may have an entry for Nonfiction Monday later, but I just didn't want to put off writing about this book.

Orange Pear Apple Bear written and illustrated by Emily Gravett. Simon & Schuster, 2007 (978-1-4169-39999-3) $12.99

If there is one thing I have never seen the picture book world have too many of, it's clever and witty books using only a few words. Here we have just the four words of the title (one extra sneaks in at the end,) which very beginning readers can explore in all sorts of silly combinations. As a plus, it even rhymes.

The book starts off introducing the main characters: an orange, a pear, an apple and--surprise! a bear. Then everything starts to mix: we have an orange pear and an apple (colored) bear. An apple, an orange and a pear (shaped) bear. The bear finally eats all three of the fruits, waddling away from their peels and cores with a triumphant "There!"

Gravett keeps the watercolor illustrations simple and elegant, just the objects against plenty of white space, but the changing moods of the bear throughout add an extra layer of humor.

I would love to see a board book version of this title; with its emphasis on nouns and shapes and color, it has clear appeal for very young children, and it's a joy to read aloud. * (1-6)

Other blog reviews: Menasha Kids

Labels: , ,