Review: 1000 Things about Holland by Jesse Goossens

holland 1000 things about holland 

Holland and 1000 Things about Holland by Jesse Goossens and Charlotte Dematons

Breathtakingly lovely, this is a unique way to approach explaining a country to children.  There are two volumes in this set and they must be read together but how you do that is up to you.  One volume, Holland, is all images of Holland showing different scenes and parts of the nation and culture.  The illustrations are large, two-page spreads filled with small details.  In the second volume, the details in the illustrations are explained.  Pulling out various elements of the images, many things are revealed from favorite foods to festivals to children’s book characters.  There are paragraphs on each element so that readers truly start to understand Holland. 

This book would not work in the same way without this format.  Taking the time to linger on images makes for almost a journey to Holland as if you are gazing out a window and taking it all in.  Then when you begin to wonder about something, you can turn to your guidebook and see what it is with wonderful details.  But it is that first immersion visually that makes the entire set work so well and be so compelling. 

A wondrous visit to Holland, this book set demonstrates why innovation in children’s book making is so important.  Appropriate for ages 8-12.

Reviewed from copies received from Myrick Marketing & Media.

Review: Come Back, Moon by David Kherdian

come back moon

Come Back, Moon by David Kherdian, illustrated by Nonny Hogrogian

In this quiet book, Bear blames the moon for not being able to fall asleep.  So he pulls it out of the sky.  Fox notices that the moon is gone and so do Skunk, Opossum and Raccoon.  Crow asks Fox why he doesn’t know where the moon is, since he’s so clever.  So Fox takes them all to talk to Owl who is wise.  Owl knows where the moon is, since he saw Bear take it.  So they head off to retrieve the moon from Bear.  But how will they get it away from him?

This book has a wonderfully clear and simple story line that makes it ideal to use with toddlers.  It also has a deep quiet to it that will work for good bedtime or naptime reading.  Kherdian uses repetition throughout the story, having the different animals share ideas and echo back decisions. 

Hogrogian’s art also has that simple style.  She has wonderful images like the one on the cover that speak to the darkness and loss of the moon.  Her animals are realistically depicted and appear against white or tan backgrounds with few details. 

There is a place for quiet books for small children and this one has just enough activity to keep it moving too.  It would make a great board book.  Appropriate for ages 1-3.

Reviewed from copy received from Beach Lane Books.