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The Yellow Balloon Hardcover – April 9, 2004
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From School Library Journal
PreSchool-Grade 3-This wordless picture book traces the journey of a rogue balloon as it is carried along from scene to scene. This format is similar to that of Jean Marzollo's "I Spy" books (Scholastic) and Martin Handford's "Where's Waldo" series (Candlewick), as children are challenged to find the tiny balloon, as well as other objects, in action-filled pictures. The aerial views are panoramic and the colors are breathtaking. Depicting many different parts of the world and many unique landscapes, the illustrations are imaginative and elaborate, and brimming with hundreds of captivating miniature details. At closer scrutiny, observers will see that Dematons combines images from various time periods: a truck is loaded with tomatoes while a short distance away, marauding warriors on horseback pillage a walled town. An escaped convict creeps from page to page, while a man wearing white robes and a turban travels on a magic carpet. With the artwork providing a springboard, opportunities for picture-inspired storytelling are unlimited. This stunning offering has broad appeal.
Corrina Austin, Locke's Public School, St. Thomas, Ontario, Canada
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
K-Gr. 3. Using the same approach as the author's Let's Go (2001), this oversize, wordless picture book, originally published in the Netherlands, is a combination of Where's Waldo and The Red Balloon. It opens as a blue SUV departs from a lone house, a yellow balloon floating in the sky above. After being swallowed up in a busy, colorful metropolis, the car proceeds on a worldwide tour, captured in double-spread vistas viewed from overhead. Each scene is crammed with myriad, tiny details that collapse time, placing the contemporary, the historical, and the fantastic side-by-side (an aircraft carrier on the ocean passes a sea serpent and wooden warships exchanging broadsides). The car and the yellow balloon provide the "narrative" thread, until their journey ends, right where it began. Don't expect a story. The appeal is the discovery of new and recurring images within each brightly colored milieu--a coven of witches in the forest, Batman in a corner, a fakir on a magic carpet, a fugitive in prison-striped garb. The art demands repeated viewings, and the more you look, the more you see. Julie Cummins
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Top customer reviews
This book is great for pre-literate kids. You can treat it as a puzzle book, or as a story book. I like to use it as a jumping off point for storytelling: where did the giraffe truck come from? Why? Where is the blue car going to go next? How did it get on the island? Is the castle battle real or is it a movie? Can you follow the mountain trail to find out how to get to the bottom? There are many connecting "threads" that flow from page to page (but are not present on every page). Trying to discover them has given us hours of bedtime enjoyment.
What I love about this book is its open-endedness. This is far more than a "Where's Waldo" book. Its an opportunity for creativity and discovery.