Fish Faces

Norbert Wu, Author
Norbert Wu, Author Henry Holt & Company $15.95 (32p) ISBN 978-0-8050-1668-0
Reviewed on: 05/31/1993
Release date: 06/01/1993
Prebound-Glued - 32 pages - 978-0-613-02792-2
Paperback - 32 pages - 978-0-8050-5347-0
Prebound-Sewn - 978-0-7807-6819-2
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Breathtaking as Wu's underwater photos of scaly denizens of the deep may be, his picture book is less the catch of the day than the one that got away. Page after page of the book presents arresting portraits of luminous fish--spreads are composed of full-page and inset photos, and the color and composition capture the almost supernatural beauty of hidden ocean life. But the pictures are not supported by the text. Wu's writing is banal at best (``Faces that could be sad or mad'') and occasionally ungrammatical (``Fish that glide on fins like wings''). An endnote identifies the pictured fish by cross-referencing them through page numbers--although the spreads are unnumbered; directionals name creatures in insets from ``top to bottom'' for horizontal layouts. Failure to include such basics as the native regions of each fish will frustrate the curious. Ages 4-7. (June)
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