It’s Monday, What are You Reading is a meme hosted by Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki from Unleashing Readers (new host of Monday reading: Kathryn T at Book Date). Since two of our friends, Linda from Teacher Dance and Tara from A Teaching Life have been joining this meme for quite awhile now, we thought of joining this warm and inviting community.
As we celebrate beauty, art, music, I am glad to share two picturebooks that celebrate ingenuity, invention, and the reinvention of one’s self.
Written and Illustrated by: Marion Deuchars
Published by: Laurence King Publishing, 2016
ISBN: 1780677677 (ISBN13: 9781780677675). Borrowed from the Jurong West Public Library. Book photos taken by me.
Bob is a creature who started having body-image issues when other animals called his legs skinny, puny, and laughed at his “funny stick walk.”
Naturally, this made him feel quite upset. He started exercising, eating more, dressing up to hide his legs – but none made him feel any better. Nothing worked. Until he chanced upon an art gallery, while walking off his despair, and felt inspired by all the beauty that he saw inside.
He began having colourful ideas – which he utilized by designing/decorating his beak – ala Matisse, and at one point, ala Jackson Pollock. Brilliant, if I may say so myself.
While this book may have started off with the self-consciousness brought about by a burning desire to be accepted by most everyone – I like how Bob came into his own, in the end, by reinventing himself with utter panache, shimmering colours, and even the occasional minimalist style.
Written and Illustrated by: Mary GrandPré
Published by: Arthur A. Levine Books, 2016
ISBN: 0439357640 (ISBN13: 9780439357647). Borrowed from the Jurong West Public Library. Book photos taken by me.
Cleonardo came from a family of inventors. Her grandfather Leonardo, and her father Geonardo love tinkering with metals and wood, wheels and wrenches.
Cleonardo, who spends most of her waking hours in her father’s workshop, would often give a few suggestions – which her father would good-naturedly ignore or set aside. Not to be deterred, Cleonardo decided to develop her own project for an upcoming festival. She worked in secret, supported by her grandfather Leonardo who “cleaned off a large fallen tree for her worktable.”
It is apparent that Cleonardo had very different ideas from her father: with her penchant for butterfly wings, termite twine, and cloud feathers. Cleonardo was determined to come up with a big and bold invention that would make her father proud of her. At the same time, Cleonardo’s father misses his daughter’s presence in his workshop, and was equally intent on inventing something that would make his daughter proud.
How the story ends, I shall leave for you to discover. A lovely story about persistence, embracing one’s vision, and the warmth of a father-daughter relationship as they create something from out of nothing.
#LitWorld2018GB Update: United States of America / United Kingdom (Marion Deuchars live in London)