Inside Outside by Anne-Margot Ramstein and Matthias Aregui (9781536205978)
This visually stunning book is the return of the creators of Before After. This book focuses on the opposites of inside and outside and also on the relationship between the two. Using only images, the book explores what it means to be “inside” and what it means to be “outside.” At times the book will fool the reader, allowing them to think they are outside when they are actual in, something revealed by the next picture in the pair. Images of a submarine window, which is on the cover of the book, reveal a pairing of the outside really being the vast ocean not the peek through the window. A setting in a snow globe may feel outdoors, but it’s actually caught inside the dome of the globe. These are just a few of the exciting opposites shared here.
So gorgeously designed, the modern illustrations in this book have a harmonious feel to them as readers progress through boats caught in storms, ocean life, and even pounding hearts. Each turn of the page is a delight and a surprise as readers try to figure out which is inside or outside and why. The art is filled with sharp lines, bright deep colors, and offers interesting perspectives on the subject matter just to fool the eye.
A brilliant wordless book meant to exploration. Appropriate for ages 4-6.
Reviewed from copy provided by Candlewick.
I Love My Colorful Nails by Alicia Acosta and Luis Amavisca, illustrated by Gusti (9788417123598)
Ben loves to paint his nails in cheery colors. He loves looking at the bright colors on his hands. His mother shares her nail polish and so does his friend Margarita, they both have large collections of colors. One morning, as Ben headed to school with red nails, two boys started teasing him, telling him that nail polish is for girls. Ben felt very sad and a few days later, he told his parents about it. His father immediately asked for orange nail polish for his own nails. At school though, more boys started to tease him. Soon Ben was only wearing nail polish on the weekends, removing it for school. His dad though, wore bright nail polish every day, even when he picked Ben up from school. As Ben’s birthday arrives, he gets the best present ever! What could it be?
This picture book offers a very approachable way to talk about gender expectations and how even small expressions of difference are important. The parents in the book are both tremendously warm and encouraging of their son, but the book accurately shows how school can be very different for children who are not conforming to societal norms. The use of nail polish is clever, adding a colorful element to the tale as well as something that Ben’s father can embrace himself.
Gusti’s illustrations are marvelous. Filled with warmth and humor, they celebrate the bright colors of nail polish on each page. Ben’s emotions are shown through the set of his shoulders and his entire posture. When he is sad, he droops over and when he’s happy he bounces on the page.
A great book about gender nonconforming behavior in children and how a school can be a place of safety. Appropriate for ages 4-6.
Reviewed from copy provided by Nubeocho.