The Book With No Pictures by B J Novak
|The Book With No Pictures by B J Novak|
|Category: For Sharing|
|Reviewer: Rachael Spencer|
|Summary: A book so perfect for sharing that I wish I had more than five stars to give it. Raucous and ridiculous, and all without a single picture in sight! Be careful though, once you open this book, you have to say Every. Single. Thing on the page. You have been warned.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 48||Date: October 2014|
My favourite moments of reviewing books are ones just like this; when I decide to take a chance on a book that I have no idea about but which looks like it might be just a little bit interesting, and it turns out they are. The Book With No Pictures by B J Novak isn't just a little bit interesting, it is staggeringly original and so much fun.
True to its word, there are no pictures in this picture book. Instead, it takes the premise that whoever is reading it has to say whatever is written on the page, no matter how ridiculous or stupid it might make them sound. You can imagine just how much fun kids will have listening to adults spurt out words like 'blork', or sentences like 'I am a monkey who taught myself to read', can't you? A brilliant way to bring people together with a book.
I feel slightly obligated to say that this book might not be for you, it's raucous and slightly mad, and very, very different. To me though, this is nothing but a good thing. Taking the pictures away has made the author think differently, in turn forcing the person who's reading to think differently. And think you must! It's not an easy read, I planned and practised before I read it with my son because it builds and builds, requiring many a different voice. This, too, is nothing but a good thing.
In not using pictures, the words have become the stars of this book and that is a very special thing indeed. Making words fun is the best possible hope for getting kids to engage with literacy in a way that means they will carry it on into the future, and I think this book is at the forefront of finding out how to do that. If this book doesn't descend into loud giggles and mayhem then a small part of me can't help but think you're reading a different book. If you need any hints and tips, then there's an excellent video on Youtube which demonstrates how it should be done. Of course, 'how it should be done' is exactly whatever way you like. So long as you make sure you say what's on the page….
A book which I think has a similar feeling and approach to its writing This Book Just Ate My Dog by Richard Byrne, which I think is definitely worth a look if you love The Book With No Pictures.
You can read more book reviews or buy The Book With No Pictures by B J Novak at Amazon.co.uk Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
You can read more book reviews or buy The Book With No Pictures by B J Novak at Amazon.com.
Like to comment on this review?
Just send us an email and we'll put the best up on the site.