CM . . . . Volume XVIII Number 27 . . . . March 16, 2012
Because concept picture books dealing with colour are in no short supply, new books portraying the rainbow of hues in our world need to be exceptional to stand out from the pack. While Arlene Alda’s new photographic picture book seems to offer an original concept by focussing on the gloomiest of colours, it does not quite deliver.
The rhyming text used throughout the book certainly has glowing moments, but the ending is confusing. In the beginning of the book, Alda writes “I like most colors that I see, except the color GREY. GREY is clouds without the sun. GREY is dreary dark.” The tables then turn rather unexpectedly on the last pages when the text says “So many colors filled my eyes while I was out today. My favorite one? I’ve made up my mind. It’s home on my bunny. It’s GREY!!!” While it seems that Alda is trying to show the sweeter, happier side of grey, the sentiment comes out of nowhere. Some more positive examples of grey objects would have helped solidify the book’s message.
Recommended with reservations.
Shannon Ozirny is the Head of Youth Services at the West Vancouver Memorial Library where the sky is often grey, but always beautiful.
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Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.