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Friday, July 10, 2009

It's Picture Day Today (Picture Book)

Released June 2009

Reviewed by Bob Walch

Frankly, this is one of those picture books I'm not sure exactly how to handle. My initial reaction after looking at it a couple of times is, "This is really stupid! What were the editors thinking? Who would possibly buy a book like this?"

Now, that being said, I realize there is no accounting for the taste of a preschooler. Although I don't "get" this book at all, I know it is possible a three year old might love it.

As the title suggests, it is picture day at school and everyone is excited. But when you begin paging through the book you realize that we are not dealing with 1st and 2nd graders but buttons, bits of string, cardboard, feathers, grommets and other items that might be used in a craft project.

The no-so-exciting text just identifies the objects - "Sequins, squiggles, glittering stars, fuzzy pom-poms, twisty yarns. Couldn't keep any of them away - Hey, it's Picture Day today."

When the glue finally shows up, everything is sort of stuck in place and all this "stuff" is displayed on two foldout pages after being transformed into cute little craft critters. Clever? Not really!

On the other hand, you may have a child who will really fall in love with this book. But I would field test it in a bookstore and let the child look at it at least twice before purchasing it. In fact, give the child a choice between two books and see which one he wants you to buy!

Katherine Tillotson's illustrations are bright, big and bold so they may appeal to little children who don't really demand a coherent story line but don't try to sneak this one past an older or more sophisticated child. Like me, he may complain and say, "Mom, I don't get this. It's dumb!"

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