Off-Limits

Helen Yoon. Candlewick, $17.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-5362-0731-6
Yoon reveals the fun behind closed doors in this comedic, well-designed picture book. A pale, blond-bearded parent tapes an “OFF-LIMITS” sign onto a home office door, then trudges off with a coffee mug and a brown dog. Almost immediately, a curious, dark-haired child disregards it: “Hello! I’m just looking,” the child addresses readers, walking light tan fingers along the desk as cinematic angles display the spread of office supplies. Soon, “just looking” turns into a riotous adventure, as the child sweeps tape around (“Why, hello, Mr. Lamp! What a lovely scarf!”), swings circular swirls of “PAPER CLIPS AND BINDER CLIPS,” and creates a kaleidoscopic pattern of sticky notes and legal pad cut-paper chains. A combination of stark angles and rounded cartoonish positions energize mixed-media illustrations in this exemplar of childlike curiosity that, with a tender end-of-book reversal, also reinforces the importance of parent-child play. Ages 3–7. (Oct.)
Reviewed on : 08/26/2021
Release date: 10/12/2021
Genre: Children's
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