Who’s Waldo? 3 Seek-and-Find Finds for 2016
A book hasn’t caused me this much trouble since Where’s Waldo went to that barber pole factory.
-Tracy Jordan, 30 Rock [Episode 4.02: Into the Crevasse]
Seek and find: the original interactive children’s books. While maddening to some fictional sketch comedy performers (see: above), kids often regard them quite differently – with fascination.
Most library collections contain at least a few titles from the hereby declared Seek-And-Find Big Three: Where’s Waldo (or Where’s Effy if you prefer), I Spy, and Can You See What I See?
Today I’m going to highlight a few that might not be on your radar.
Where’s the Elephant? by Barroux
This book begins as you expect this sort of book to begin:
But then, whoa, it turns the genre on it’s head as it slowly become a commentary on the negative consequences of deforestation and industrialization. With each turn of the page trees dwindle and buildings proliferate, making the animals easier and easier to find. When the urban transition is complete and our animal friends find them selves stuck in a tiny zoo with one lousy tree, Elephant, Snake, and Parrot bust out and return to nature. Wonderful and quietly revolutionary.
Mr. Tweed and the Band in Need by Jim Stoten
Perhaps because we live in an age of mash-ups or perhaps in reaction to adults who decry the lack of reading in the seek-and-find world, it seems like more and more books are incorporating seek-and-find into what would otherwise be straightforward picture books. That’s the case with this one. What happens when you want to get the band back together, but some of the members are missing (a problem I imagine Mötly Crüe faces fairly regularly)? Dandy dog Mr. Tweed (and the reader) arrive to lend a helping hand. This book follows in the footsteps of Mr. Tweed’s Good Deeds from a couple years back.
Search and Spot: Go! by Laura Ljungkvist
For those interested in more conventional finding fare, the Search and Spot series has a new installment all about vehicles coming in October.
With its stylish modern design, this is a book that could find a place in a school library just as easily as it could adorn the absurdly fastidious shelves of mommy blog children. A win win.
Filed under: Reviews
About Travis Jonker
Travis Jonker is an elementary school librarian in Michigan. He writes reviews (and the occasional article or two) for School Library Journal and is a member of the 2014 Caldecott committee. You can email Travis at email@example.com, or follow him on Twitter: @100scopenotes.
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