David Merveille, Author . Kane/Miller $14.95 (44p) ISBN 978-1-933605-72-2

Most jukeboxes are stocked with hits and oldies. But the marvelous machine in Merveille's bistro has something for everyone: punk, opera, hip-hop, the blues, even choral music. What's more, each play is literally transportive, zipping the customer into a poster-like celebration of the genre, with graphic illustration and typography artfully intertwined in the style of vintage European advertising. One fan imagines he's in Monument Valley, strumming a guitar that forms the “c” in the word “country.” Another is transformed into a white-suited John Travolta look-alike, his upraised, pointing hand serving as the “I” in the word “disco.” Some of the pairings have a whiff of surrealism: a single hibiscus blossom prompts the machine to play Hawaiian music, while a shadow turns into an homage to Chet Baker and his signature song, “Let's Get Lost.” Highly stylized art can come across as chilly, but Merveille's pictures are vivid and fun. Merveille lives in Brussels, and this book was first published in France; buyers take note that the illustrations reflect a distinctly European sensibility toward cigarettes. All ages. (Mar.)

Reviewed on: 02/18/2008
Release date: 02/01/2008
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