Circle, Square, Moose by Kelly L Bingham and Paul O Zelinsky
|Circle, Square, Moose by Kelly L Bingham and Paul O Zelinsky|
|Category: For Sharing|
|Reviewer: Sam Tyler|
|Summary: Settle down as I tell you all about shapes, but there is a Moose loose about this book! We can't read about squares and triangles when there is a massive moose in the way. Watch as Moose and Zebra take the rules of the educational children's book and throw them off the page with hilarious results.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 40||Date: November 2014|
If you have children you have no doubt read loads of books about shapes; the circle, the square, the dodecahedron. They are all variations of the same things – this wheel is round like a circle, this bread reminds me of a square, what on earth is a dodecahedron? Why not spice the book up by throwing in a moose, but not just any moose. This is a moose that brings chaos to everything he touches and must be chased from the book!
There is an anarchic pleasure to Circle, Square, Moose that borders on the absurd, but manages to turn into genius. Things start off routinely as the narrator describes different shapes; things soon start to go awry when Moose turns up and wants to help. Unfortunately, he is a pretty clumsy chap and just gets in the way. The narrator cannot get rid of Moose and neither can Zebra, who manages to make things even worse. What starts off as a rather bland book about shapes descends into something far more entertaining.
At times this book borders on the precipice of being Meta; deconstructing the fundamentals of the educational children’s book. For this reason, it is best read by those that have already learnt their shapes and are aware that the book is a joke. You are not going to learn much about the basics of mathematical modelling here, but you will be entertained by some flights of fancy that take the story off the page and into your imagination.
To accompany Bingham’s third wall breaking ideas an artist is required that can create a standard kids book, but also one that appears to have creatures stepping from the real world into the book. Paul O Zelinsky does a good job in doing this, using fake page turns and even darkness to represent the narrator being frustrated with the characters that have hijacked their story. Moose is a great looking character and is somehow imbued with a cheekiness that makes his antics enjoyable, rather than annoying.
Circle, Square, Moose is an ideal book for child with an inquisitive mind and a cheeky sense of humour. It bridges the space between educational books for the very young and emerging readers. Be aware that the slightly gonzo spirit of the book requires you to understand what the joke is – if you do, this is a very amusing book that takes the rules of writing and plays with them.
For a more conventional take on learning colours and shapes you may be best sticking to something like Flip-A-Shape: Go! by SAMI, but for those fond of a little anarchy in their children's books Dog on Stilts by James Thorp and Angus Mackinnon is almost as out there as one dares to go.
You can read more book reviews or buy Circle, Square, Moose by Kelly L Bingham and Paul O Zelinsky at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy Circle, Square, Moose by Kelly L Bingham and Paul O Zelinsky at Amazon.com.
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