Day: October 31, 2011

Review: If You Lived Here by Giles Laroche

if you lived here

If You Lived Here: Houses of the World by Giles Laroche

This book invites readers to explore the different types of houses that are lived in throughout the world.  Beginning with the phrase, “If you lived here…” the book then describes some unique features of that particular type of home.  There are homes that you would have to go outside to get to the kitchen, others where you would not have to go out to even get to the barn, others are built around caves, still others are close to water or surrounded by it.  The book then defines the type of house, what materials it is made from, where this type of house is found, the date that this house first appeared, and a fact about them.  The tone is kept light and interesting, which will invite young readers to explore this subject in depth.

Laroche’s writing is welcoming and light.  He finds the most unique features of a home and describes them in simple and inviting ways.  Even the information on the materials and location are kept short and contain only the most interesting details. 

The illustrations, done in paper, have a three dimensional effect.  The homes are done in exacting detail that includes individual shingles, decorative features, and even the ability to peer closely and see into the windows to the rooms beyond.  There is a physical quality to this, creating almost a model effect where you lean in closer to see even more.  The illustrations are a delight and truly bring the structures to life.

When I first started reading this book, I wondered who would be the audience for it.  The entire book is so appealing that it will have no trouble being enjoyed by young readers interested in architecture, history, or travel.  Appropriate for ages 8-10.

Reviewed from library copy.

Sharp Fangs of Vampire Authors

fangs

In a perfect story for Halloween, Interview with a Vampire author Anne Rice takes a fanged snap at Stephenie Meyer’s new version of the vampire mythos via Rice’s Facebook page:

Lestat and Louie feel sorry for vampires that sparkle in the sun. They would never hurt immortals who choose to spend eternity going to high school over and over again in a small town —- anymore than they would hurt the physically disabled or the mentally challenged. My vampires possess gravitas. They can afford to be merciful.

After almost 2,000 comments that went back and forth between fans of the different vampire series, Rice attempted to clarify that it was all meant in humor. 

In the end, she offered an olive branch:

I very much love the new vampire authors, no doubt of it. I have unqualified praise for the originality of Charlaine Harris and Stephenie Meyer and for their success. This is fun, guys, all these new vampires roaming the fantasy world. And a little humour about it is not out of place.

 

Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/mazdotnu/5363098271/