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Tuesday, November 06, 2012

Green, Laura Vaccaro Seeger - will it win the Caldecott?

This book has had some hype surrounding it as to whether it might win the Caldecott this year.  To be honest, I've NEVER really figured out the method to the Caldecott committee's madness when it comes to choosing a winner, but I do know what I like, and I like this book.  So do a lot of other people.  But it's what people in the know,  apparently, call a"concept" book.  Basically, it explores a concept (the color green in this case) instead of telling a story, and I guess those kinds of books don't really win.  But then there's always an exception and a new committee, and they could just do anything, so who knows.

Actually, I have to admit, when I first read this book, I was kind of surprised there was so much hype about it. I mean, it's a cool book and all, but it's just green.  Except it's totally not JUST green. You see, this book has little cutouts on every page, and the cutouts match perfectly with the picture on the  previous or following page to fill in the space with precisely the right color. for example, there's a page with some limes on it, and one of them is missing a segment, but then the color in that space on the next page perfectly fills in the lime, AND it's a perfect part of the picture on the next page which is totally nothing to do with the lime.  On another page it's a pea; on another, some tiny, nearly iridescent moths; on another, delicate yellow daisies.  She even has a few pages where tiny brushstrokes on the previous page spell out words that go with the next pages.  It's amazing.  There has also been some criticism of the lightning bugs page which some people think will take the book right out of the running because they don't match perfectly.  Everyone's a critic, hey? Yeesh!  Whether it wins or not, I still think it's fantabulous.

You can read more about the controversy on the super smart Betsy Bird's blog here and she has a link there to yet another blogger's thoughts over at Calling Caldecott.  Pick up the book and let me know what you think!

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