- Age Range: 5 - 9 years
- Grade Level: Kindergarten - 4
- Lexile Measure: 310 (What's this?)
- Series: Shape Trilogy
- Hardcover: 48 pages
- Publisher: Candlewick (March 14, 2017)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 076369603X
- ISBN-13: 978-0763696030
- Product Dimensions: 9 x 0.5 x 9.1 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 102 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,782 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Triangle (Shape Trilogy) Hardcover – March 14, 2017
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From the Publisher
"Mind-blowing in the best possible way." – The Horn Book (starred review)
"Part wry comedy of errors, part Twilight Zone, this book feels timeless in that it could have been from 50 years ago, or from 50 years in the future (and possibly from another dimension)."
From School Library Journal
K-Gr 2—A pair of practical jokes will have readers debating who started it in this picture book from the deadpan duo. Readers first meet Triangle, a simple shape with two large eyes and a sturdy pair of legs. Triangle declares that he's going to play a "sneaky trick" on Square, so he sets off across a backdrop of triangular landmarks, through the slightly wilder land of waterfalls and "shapes with no names," into a region of squares to the house of Square, a similarly wide-eyed figure. Hiding outside and hissing like a snake, Triangle frightens Square and soon finds himself fleeing across the sparse landscape, with Square in hot pursuit. Returning to the safety of his triangular home, Triangle discovers that Square has a surprise of his own in store. But was Triangle the original instigator, or was turning the tables always Square's plan? Klassen's distinctive style of digital graphite and watercolor illustrations with lots of white space is well suited to the focus on simple shapes and a circular narrative that ends where it began. The horizontal movement from Triangle's abode to Square's house and back follows a clear line, with plenty of visual cues linking the text and illustrations. Both the occasionally repetitive text and the images make this title a good match for emerging readers. The characters convey an appropriate level of shifty expression through the movement of their eyes, and the ambiguous ending will elicit plenty of opinions from young audiences. VERDICT An understated ode to mischief that's sure to please fans of Sam and Dave Dig a Hole.—Chelsea Couillard-Smith, Hennepin County Library, MN
Klassen’s palette is quiet, his weathered backdrops are elegant, and his comic timing is precisely synched to Barnett’s deadpan prose. Triangle fools Square, and the story fools readers, too, as they wait for Square to put Triangle in his place, or for the two to reconcile. Instead, Triangle seems to win this round, even if he does finish the book trapped in his own home. Whereas the humor in Sam and Dave Dig a Hole was subtle and sly, this shape showdown is pure, antic buffoonery.
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
Barnett and Klassen, whose previous collaborations—Extra Yarn (2012) and Sam and Dave Dig a Hole (2014)—were Caldecott Honor Books, have created a marvelously clever picture book...The simple sentences and repetition are perfect for a young audience, who will be raptly interested in the devious dynamic between the friends. Judging by this offbeat first volume, Barnett and Klassen’s planned trilogy is shaping up to be an excellent one.
—Booklist (starred review)
Klassen's minimalist visuals make for beautiful, surreal landscapes as the shapes go back and forth; Barnett's even-more-minimalist narrative leaves gaps of many shapes and sizes for readers to ponder. Children will be intrigued by the fairy-tale quality of this narrative and may enjoy debating the motivations of its peculiar characters.
Cheeky Triangle and ingenuous Square's quirky relationship is reminiscent of Arnold Lobel's Frog and Toad, but with a twist. Klassen does remarkable things with a minimal canvas — shapes and eyes are all he's got, after all...This weird and wonderful picture book presents a whole new angle on shapes —and friendships.
—Shelf Awareness for Readers
Both the occasionally repetitive text and the images make this title a good match for emerging readers. The characters convey an appropriate level of shifty expression through the movement of their eyes, and the ambiguous ending will elicit plenty of opinions from young audiences. An understated ode to mischief that’s sure to please fans of Sam and Dave Dig a Hole.
—School Library Journal
Fans of this author-illustrator team, and of each creator individually, will recognize elements such as Klassen’s trademark simple shapes, sumptuous textures, and expressive eyes, not to mention a pesky antihero and a chase scene that goes in one direction, then back...The appended dedication and biography page includes visual confirmation that the story’s events were all in good fun.
—The Horn Book
There's a lesson about friendship along with an amusing geometry lesson in this charming picture book from the writer-artist collaborators who created the acclaimed "Sam and Dave Dig a Hole" and "Extra Yarn."
This is funny stuff and, as to be expected from Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen, delightfully off-kilter.
It’s all in the execution: the perfect text, the visually arresting and funny art (those eyeballs of Klassen’s! He really (re)invented eyeballs in picture books) — it’s a huge read-aloud winner of a book.
—PW ShelfTalker (blog)
Deadpan humor and artistic precision—a combination we’ve come to expect from the wicked Barnett/Klassen collaboration—make this story a joy to read night after night.
—B&N Kids Blog
In the start to another amusing trilogy from the dynamic children’s book duo Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen, some very sneaky shapes are up to no good.
—Pregnancy & Newborn
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I was more than pleased with this book! My students (6-7 y.o.) were mesmerized and engaged throughout the read aloud. They were making predictions about what would happen next and debating what they thought truly happened in the end.
My first graders loved it so much, that I got it for my 3 and 4 year old nieces. They enjoyed the illustrations and thought the ending was funny. Their dad was overjoyed to have something decent to read before bedtime.
This duo has a great chemistry. The simplicity of both Barnett's words and Klassen's illustrations work together create such a powerful narrative; one alone is not as strong as they are together. The characters, with only eyes, have so much expression that my niece picked up on.
Do not let the simple words and pictures deter you. The story packs a punch. This is a choice piece of literature.
The things he likes about this book:
-There are shapes, familiar and unfamiliar-- something this age group, give or take a year or two, is learning about and interested in.
-There are two sneaky tricks, and the tricks have to do with common fears (exciting!)
-There's a dramatic chase scene.
-Ending with a twist, or half twist at least.
This book didn't come with a dust jacket. It has an extra thick board-book type cover (but it's very nice looking, matte). The pages inside are regular paper. The overall design of the book is so that the book looks and feels a little different, fitting for a story by the Barnett/Klassen team.
Furthermore, I used this book to the fulfill the following CCSS standard on geometry (K.G.B.1 - teaching about squares and triangles) and also on the concepts of tall, medium, and small.
Also, when I conducted a read aloud to my Kindergarteners, they loved the book so much. One student even commented on it being the best book ever. Initially, I was worried about reading a book about a triangle being a trickster, but my master teacher had no problem with it. Plus, it didn't really influence my students at all. At least it kept them engaged and tied to the learning goals they needed to achieve.
I highly suggest that Kindergarten teachers purchase this book. It fulfills some Common Core standards and is an engaging book with unique illustrations.