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Here a Flap, There a Flap, Everywhere a Flap-Flap

August 7th, 2012
Liz · Staff Recommendations

Sometimes one of the most important features of a children’s picture book isn’t the writing or the artwork, it’s the shape of the page itself! As book production has become less costly more and more lift-the-flap books and gatefold books as well as slide-out books are being published. When done well these books really enhance the stories they are telling. Occasionally they even expound on a classic; what child hasn’t wondered what exactly is actually in those train cars of Donald Crews’ classic Freight Train?

Inside Freight Train by Caldecott winner Donald Crews finally reveals what’s been hiding in the train cars of every child’s favorite freight train. Through the clever sliding mechanism of this sturdy board book children discover all about what the train is carrying, whether it be toys and books or apples and peaches.

If a duckling grows and becomes a duck can a car grow and become…a truck? Such are the playful rhyming questions asked by Susan Shea in this colorfully illustrated picture book with gatefolds on every page. The youngest readers take delight in the silly questions proposed and the older children love to predict which preposterous question will be asked next.

Marie Torres Cimarusti has a whole series of Peek-a-_____ books which all feature bold illustrations and large flaps on every page. Children play peek-a-boo with the animals by lifting the flap and then get to add each animal’s sounds. A reassuringly predictable and riotous book for the very young.

For those of you who attend Mother Goose in the West Harrison branch on Thursdays Where’s Spot?by Eric Hill has truly become a classic! When it’s time to eat dinner Spot’s mom can’t find him and so begins a merry game of finding Spot. Along the way the reader finds a monkey eating a banana in a closet, a snake in a grandfather clock, and a crocodile under a bed. Finally, of course, Spot is indeed found and can eat his dinner.

Simms Taback keeps us all guessing in his City Animals.Taback gives small hints of what each animal is as the gatefold is unfolded 3 sequential times giving even the littlest listeners a chance to guess what the animal is.

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