Book Chat

NPBM Blog-Along: Folk and Fairy Tales

Did you know that November is Picture Book Month?

Trick question, because it never was before… but now it is!  Picture Book Month is an international initiative to celebrate children’s books and debunk the rumor that printed books will cease to exist because of new technology.  Go read more at founder Dianne de Las Casas’ website, and tune in for the blog posts by famous authors and illustrators.  There’s even a calendar with different themes for each day of November, so you can play along.

You know I can’t resist a good picture book, so this is right up my alley!  Instead of NaNoWriMo or any of the other 30-Day-Blog-Challenges, I’ve decided to take on Picture Book Month as my own personal blogging challenge–I will highlight one book a day that goes along with the theme for that day, in addition to my regular blogging.  Join me for Picture Book Month and share your favorite picture books!

November 20, 2011
Theme: Folk and Fairy Tales

Mirror Mirror: A Book of Reversible Verse, written by Marilyn Singer and illustrated by Josee Massee

I came across this book while I was a school librarian.  I’ve actually been meaning to blog about this picture book ever since I got my hands on it, because it is so cool!  Each page addresses a different fairy tale in a reversible poem.  Read the poem one way tells one story; in the next column, read it backward and the story is completely different.  It’s really clever!  The illustrations are a perfect match, appropriately intricate and maze-like to show the circular nature of the poems.

I just have to quote it, for you to get the full effect–this is taken from Amazon.com’s page, so I figure it’s safe to reproduce again.  This is from the Goldilocks reverso:

“Asleep in cub’s bed,
BLONDE
STARTLED BY
BEARS,
the headline read.”

Running down the page side-by-side with this poem is a second, which ends with: “Next day
the headline read:
BEARS STARTLED
BY BLONDE
ASLEEP IN CUB’S BED.”

See what she did there?  Most of the poems cleverly show the point of view of the hero, and then turn it around to show the villain’s point of view too.  Check out this amazing picture book for the full experience!

What’s your favorite Folk and Fairy Tale picture book?

Tune in tomorrow for the next picture book, and check out Picture Book Month’s website too!

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