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So checking out the one star review here, in some ways it's hard to argue. At face value there isn't a big story here, it's (pardon the pun) fairly two dimensional. Then again, followers of Jon Klassen will be familiar with simplicity. (I Want My Hat Back - Bear loses hat then finds it again, simple, right?). The simplicity feeds the humour. That said, though I read and review a lot of kids' books, I'm not the target market, my five year old is. The acid test for him is if he asks to read it again straight away, he did. He laughed, he talked about the story and he added what was happening, job done as far as a kids' book goes. I should add that this is a gorgeous quality book (the first hardback version), it really is a lovely looking book, great to handle. With Mac Barnett writing the words, he and Jon Kassen really compliment each other. Not quite as quirky and fun as their previous books, Extra Yarn and Sam & Dave Dig A Hole but still very entertaining. My one gripe and this stands for a lot of this genre of books is that it seems a little over priced. The face value is £12.99, a bit much for a short read.
I love mathematics – with a particular interest in Shape and Symmetry. So, how could I resist an illustrated book called “Triangle”. Although I am a little older than the target audience of 3 – 7 year olds, I really enjoyed this book, and especially the illustrations. The main character is an isosceles (yes, of course I measured the sides) triangle, who lives in a triangular house, in an area filled exclusively with triangles of all sizes (but no scalene or right-angle ones). Being a liberal triangle, he has non-triangular friends, in particular one masquerading as a square (actually a rectangle, but I expect most children will not get out their rulers to check). Triangle wants to play a trick on Square. Actually, quite a nasty trick. He plays on Square’s fear of snakes. Square retaliates by making Triangle scared. Was his retaliation planned – or just a fortunate (?) coincidence? Not really a great lesson for children – how to terrify your friends by using their greatest fear, and validating revenge (deliberate or not). But, on the plus side – they will learn about shapes, and how you cannot get a square through a triangular hole (unless it goes sideways – something for the next lesson).
My 3 month old son LOVES this book and Square (can’t wait for Circle in 2019). He is very interested in the high contrast black and white illustrations, and I think he likes the figures because of their large eyes. My only complaint is the pages are really flimsy and will rip easily, and they stick together terribly. This makes reading the story to him (while you are holding a baby and trying to hold the book and turn pages with the other) very difficult. I’d like to have thicker pages. It’s also pretty expensive for a children’s book IMO.