Saturday, April 30, 2016

Jen's Five Books Unfolding

Bird & Diz by Gary Golio (Candlewick, $19.99)
(1) Early this month, at the Kids' Literary Festival, Gary Golio came with his wife and fellow-author Susanna Reich, and illustrator E.B. Lewis, to present picture books of history and biography. The kids in the room, including mine, were a bit young for the discussion, so they hung out in the castle corner, popping up for the actual readings ... and for the presentation of Bird & Diz, Gary's colorful and expansive story of Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie and their work in bebop and jazz.

Out the Window by Cybèle Young (Groundwood Books, $12.95)
(2) So after Gary and Susanna and E.B. Lewis unfolded Bird & Diz across the room and went back to their discussion, my small child quietly wandered off to the children's section. A few minutes later, just as quietly, he returned with a book in a box, sat back in his corner and proceeded to unfold this new book across the floor. (Not pictured, alas.) Out the Window is an accordion book that shows many many snippets of things passing outside a window...until you reach the end and turn to the reverse pages, where you can see everything that has happened from the OTHER SIDE.

And then I remembered that we have other unfolding books in the store!

Migrant: The Journey of a Mexican Worker by José Manuel Mateo, illustrated by Javier Martínez Pedro (Abrams Books, $17.95)
This detailed fanfold book follows the journey of a kid and his family from Mexico to the United States, through both narrative text and a single connected narrative illustration.


Life-Size Zoo by Toyofumi Fukuda (Seven Footer Press, $17.95)
Life-sized photographs of many animals! Or parts of animals. Some pages fold out, because some animals are REALLY big.

Thing Explainer: Complicated Stuff in Simple Words by Randall Munroe (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $24.95)
Here is everything, explained in detail, using (approximately) the 1,000 most common words in English. As with Life-Size Zoo, Thing Explainer has mostly regular pages, with a few places that unfold for greater detail -- such as the Sky at Night, the Earth's Surface, and The Pieces Everything is Made Of (periodic table), and at the very back, a building called the Sky Toucher (a 4-page-spread). From the creator of the xkcd online comic.

Bonus: Here are two more fully concertina-style books, recently added to the bookstore's collection:
The Secret Garden, Unfolded, Retold in Pictures by Becca Stadtlander (Rock Point, $9.99)
Friendly Faces in the Yard: Baby's First Soft Book by Surya Sajnani (QEB Publishing, $12.95)

Jennifer Sheffield, April 2016

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