SPLAT! by Jon Burgerman

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SPLAT! by Jon Burgerman

Category: For Sharing
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Sam Tyler
Reviewed by Sam Tyler
Summary: The hero of SPLAT! Is not having the best of days, every time you turn the page they get covered in something. Why not help out in this fun novelty book that helps spark a child's imagination?
Buy? Maybe Borrow? Yes
Pages: 32 Date: April 2017
Publisher: OUP Oxford
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 9780192749543

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Everybody loves a clown…. Wait a minute, does anyone like a clown? They are as likely to make a child cry as they are to make them laugh. One thing that they do have going for them is the slapstick humour and although we may not enjoy clowns themselves, we do enjoy watching someone get smacked in the face with a custard pie. Therefore, why not enjoy the mayhem without the harlequin?

SPLAT! is as much a statement of intent as it is a book. On one page we have our hero (or should we call that 'victim'), on the other page something else. What happens when you splat the two pages together? Perhaps our hero will receive an eyes and mouth, or perhaps they will become covered in cream or bugs. It is up to you to help the creature out as they make their way through a very messy book.

Some books rely on their story, others their images. There is an even rarer group that rely on something else – their idea. SPLAT! is an ideas book that takes one simple concept and runs with it. After a child has started to enjoy reading, you can introduce ideas that subvert the traditional narrative; there are seemingly more books that reinvent the classic fairy tales than retell them. This book asks a child to imagine that the pages are alive and that one effects the other. This type of concept tickles a child's imagination, especially when some of the items are so silly.

Rather than just stick to splatting custard pies over and over again, Jon Burgerman has plenty of fun by adding sprinkles, or even bugs. Burgerman has a distinctive style that is in keeping with is doodle art. This means that the book is simple and very colourful, but also perhaps a little naïve. The essence of doodling is to be quick, so the images look like they could have been done speedily. The children's book market is full of detailed illustrations that have been poured over by an artist for weeks, so seeing something as simple as SPLAT! is different, but you feel a little short-changed.

With few words in SPLAT! this is not a book that is going to help develop your child's reading skills, but it may just help their imagination. If they can develop their brain muscle to understand that not everything is as it seems, they will see there is a lot more to life. This is a book that is all about fun and fun is exactly what you will have.

There are some great books that break the wall between reader and book; Circle, Square, Moose by Kelly L Bingham and Paul O Zelinsky and Nibbles: The Book Monster by Emma Yarlett are two fine examples.

Buy SPLAT! by Jon Burgerman at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy SPLAT! by Jon Burgerman at Amazon.co.uk.


Buy SPLAT! by Jon Burgerman at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy SPLAT! by Jon Burgerman at Amazon.com.


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