Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews



Yusuke Yonezu
Novelty Board Book
For ages 2 to 4
Minedition, 2015   ISBN: 978-9888240685

Aside from in crystals and fractals there aren’t many straight lines or sharp edges in nature. For example, you don’t often see a square in the natural world. In our world, which is full of things we humans have made, squares are everywhere. Objects can be square and the spaces between objects can be square as well. For example a window frame can be square, and the open space created when the window is open can also be square.

In this splendid board book Yusuke Yonezy explores all kinds of things that are square, and also a few rectangular things too. To do this he uses illustrations, and die-cut square shapes that form little windows that we can look through. On the cover of the book we see a drawing of a bus that has three square windows and through these windows we see three blue squares. When we turn the page we are asked “What can three small squares be?” When we turn the page again we see that the squares form the open windows of a bus, and they also become the blue square windows of a train.

On the next page we are presented with a die-cut square and through it we can see a green square. We are asked “What could this square be?” and when he turn the page we see that the square can be the body of an orange teapot and the cover of a green book.

Children are going to be fascinated to see how the die-cut spaces in this book have a kind of magic effect. A green square becomes an orange one, two blue rectangles (yes, rectangles turn up on the pages too) become two red candles and two blue pencils. How is this even possible?