The Black and White Factory

Eric Telchin, illus. by Diego Funck. Bonnier/Little Bee, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-4998-0277-1
Telchin (See a Heart, Share a Heart) takes the interactive format of Hervé Tullet’s Press Here and other similar titles and builds a story around it. The factory of the title is responsible for coloring things black and white. It’s staffed by a zebra, panda, and penguin, naturally, and the rules are strict: “No messes. No colors. No surprises allowed. Ever.” In the bar code room, the animals discover an orange stripe. “How did color get inside our perfectly clean factory?” the penguin cries. “Use your fingers to wipe the color off the bar code,” the panda directs readers. “Go on, put some muscle into it!” With each page turn and reader action, the mess worsens and the color intensifies—until, of course, the animals realize that color is a feature, not a bug. The storytelling drags, and the conclusion is visible from a mile off, but the labels on the factory’s machines provide giggles as a tank of black paint runs into two different sprayers labeled “Dalmatian spots” and “cow spots,” while a wall poster notes that “correct” zebra stripes run vertically, rather than side to side. Ages 4–8. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 05/16/2016
Release date: 08/30/2016
Genre: Children's
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