Inside Outside

Lizi Boyd. Chronicle, $15.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-4521-0644-1
Boyd’s (I Love Grandma) wordless book features die-cut windows that readers can use to peer at small details on adjacent pages. The story’s greatest charm is in its portrait of a boy who lives alone and is constantly (yet tranquilly) busy. Clean gouache images painted on brown paper give the spreads a homemade feel. The opening scene shows the boy inside, busy at his table, preparing to start seeds in pots. Through the die-cut holes, snowmen the boy has built can be seen outside. The next spread is set outdoors; the boy plays in the snow, while a picture of a snowman that the boy has drawn is visible inside the house. Interior and exterior views alternate as the boy’s seeds sprout, and he finds a turtle in the spring rain. He gardens, makes sailboats, sails them in a little pool, then draws pictures of them, too. He’s full of ideas about new things to do, his animals and plants flourish, and the overall feeling is one of pervasive contentment. Many small incidents will sustain interest through multiple readings. Ages 3–5. Agent: Liza Pulitzer-Voges, Eden Street. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 03/04/2013
Release date: 03/01/2013
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