Canada Council for the Arts have announced the winners of the 2015 Governor General’s Awards. Here are the winners of the youth categories:
Children’s Literature – Text Winner
The Gospel Truth by Caroline Pignat
Children’s Literature – Illustrated Books Winner
Sidewalk Flowers by JonArno Lawson, illustrated by Sydney Smith
Who Done It? by Olivier Tallec (InfoSoup)
This long narrow picture book opens with the spine at the top, showing two lines of characters in a double-page spread. A question is asked about the characters. Who is in love? Who is wearing a disguise? Who is playing a prank? Then the reader tries to spot the answer among the characters. Some of them are easy, others are more challenging to answer and take some close examination of the illustrations. This is a quieter kind of “I Spy” book with simple art and a focus on emotions.
A French import, this picture book will surely find a lot of fans with the crowd who are a bit too young for more complicated finding books. The focus on emotions is very appealing and will lead to conversations about how you can tell from a picture who is feeling a specific thing. Tallec does a wonderful job of keeping the images clear enough to figure out the answer but also alluring enough that readers will examine almost every figure to see if there are more than one answer.
This is a very appealing picture book that mixes search and find with emotions. Appropriate for ages 3-5.
Reviewed from copy received from Chronicle Books.