I read to children a lot, but I’ve never had a child squeal with delight when I removed the book jacket to reveal the book’s cover. Such is the magic of the book The Jacket by Kirsten Hall and illustrated by Dasha Tolstikova, published by Enchanted Lion Books, 2014. Actually, I don’t often take the jacket off a book, but this one is special.
|The art is playful and inviting with lots of white space|
But Book isn’t the only love in the girl’s life. There’s her dog.
|The name Egg Cream always gets a laugh from kids|
Book can see why the girl loves Egg Cream, but he’s a big slobbery problem to Book, and that dog’s always interrupting the girl’s reading.
|Tolstikova’s creates great expressions for book and the girl|
One day, a disaster happens and Egg Cream damages Book. The girl is upset and it feels like she no longer loves Book. The next morning, however, the girl makes Book a jacket and he is even more special to her. The last pages of the book show how to make a book jacket for any book you love.
One of the things I loved about The Jacket was that although Book saw Egg Cream as a problem and was damaged by him, they never became real enemies. The girl, the book, and the dog are all a kind of family, and there are ways to work out things if there is love. The sweet way the girl repairs Book delights the children I read it to.
It’s always a pleasure when I find books like this because the children I read to are all part of adoptive families. Some are adopted into families, some are with their birth parents but have adopted brothers and sisters. They need stories about creative resolutions to problems. stories that show how damaged things can be repaired – sometimes in ways that make them more colorful.
She squealed, “It’s book!” grabbed it from me and hugged it. “Oh Book, I’m so happy you’re here.” Then she was quiet for minute. “Wait a minute. This is Book. And Book is a book about a book. That’s awesome.”
After the hole is captured, it has to be transported to a lab.
|Reba’s amazed by the hole’s trickery|
|It’s a well bound book that lies flat and invites investigation|
This is a great book for all ages – although it’s marketed for children, it’s really a book for anyone who loves illustration. It sparked our imaginations about what the hole would do after the book was closed.
|Lydia studies the drawings and tries to figure out how the hole gets around so well|
Both Lydia and Reba thought it was cool enough to want to read it again. We loved that a complex story could be told in this unique way.
When I read it, I thought of artist Paul Klee’s statement that “a line is a dot that went for a walk.” This hole goes for a walk and a ride and it takes flight. My sense of wonder took flight, too.
|The most intriguing hole you’ll ever look through|
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