What could be so hard about creating a picture book? After all, it has fewer words than books for adults, and most of the space is taken up by pictures. However, anyone who has tried to write a book for children knows that creating a story that will appeal to children and draw them back for repeated readings is an art, as is mastering meter and rhyme. Finding just the right words and phrases – and, as is sometimes the case in this book, doing so outside the bounds of traditional sentence structure and grammar – is a mountain that few writers can climb. From All the World, here is an example of word choice – with only eight total syllables! – that approaches perfection:
Hive, bee, wings, hum
Husk, cob, corn, yum!
The text of All the World is complemented by illustrations that move the story forward with creativity and imagination. Juxtaposing motion and stillness, sometimes on the same page, is an artistic Olympic sport. Take, for example, this illustration, with its disarmingly simple color palette:
In All the World, Liz Garton Scanlon and Marla Frazee manage every aspect with panache. And that’s why we chose this book.
August 21, 2018