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Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Spots in a Box, by Helen Ward. templar books, Candlewick, Random House. 2015. $19.00 ages 3 and up

"But instead
of the right kind,
these spots were
all wrong -

a big disappointment:
too tall and too long!

Soon more spots
arrived ... "

Poor guinea fowl! He is missing the white speckles that define him. He wants to make it right. A letter asking to 'please send spots' may be just the ticket. The results of his request are quite astounding!

The variety of spots that arrive in a box tied up with string allows the accomplished and innovative Helen Ward to bring all of her artistic skills to fashioning an abundance of wild and varied spots to be considered. There are spots that are far too big and others that are exceptionally small, spots that don't even seem to be spots, spots that are even striped  ... you know what I mean. It takes time and patience to find exactly what he is looking for, and to become the bird he wants to be.

The watercolor images are intricately detailed, as we have come to expect from this fine artist. They entertain and delight, and are sure to create interest in the glitter that comes from using foil and other sparkly materials. There is even one connect-the-dot illustration that may be just a little too enticing for young readers. The verse is as enjoyable as the illustrations. This book is sure to become a favorite for little ones.

It's funny, and beautiful as well.


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