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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).
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 ordered this from Amazon after my 2 year old chose it from our public library. He loved the book it seems, and was very happy a few weeks later when I gave him his own copy of it. The test of a good children's book I believe is whether a child wants to re-read and laughs (if appropriate for the story!) My son thinks this story is hilarious. The paperback copy has a lovely feel to it, rounded edges and quality paper. The illustration is unusual and interesting, the story itself doesn't have much to it but as I said my son laughs every time. This has made me look at what other stories this writer/illustrator combo has done
This book is beautiful and simple (in the best way). I bought it for my 3 year old based on the cover. He has autism and he is obsessed with triangles, they actually calm him down when he's overwhelmed and anxious (he carries triangular shapes around pretty much all the time). Anyway, he's literally spent the past two hours flicking through this book and I've had to read it to him about a dozen times too. The story is clever, the illustrations are just beautiful and simple and my son hasn't been this chilled out and happy in ages. Thanks!
Quirky. Delivered on time. Firm matt finish to pages. Great eye expressions on faces. Used with my nursery class when talking about shapes. They thought it was funny - the adults loved it too! Would be suitable for all who love picture books. Need to get the others in the series now!
I'm shocked by the venomous 1 star review of this book. My class of 30 5 year olds love it and have requested it again and again since we first read it. They laugh like drains each time. I haven't found anyone I know who doesn't like it yet.