books without words

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We've been reading The Red Book by Barbara Lehman with Bronwynn. Well, I say "reading," but there's not a single word in this book, not even on the cover. Instead, it's beautifully illustrated and completely open for interpretation.

At first, we were a little lost. We started out just naming what we saw in each picture. But eventually, over the past few weeks, the most elaborate, beautiful, entertaining story has unfolded, as told by Kris, me and B. Each telling is different, and equally gripping. As a writer, I love it. We weave a tale every night, tweak the meaning ever so slightly, then turn the last page and close the book and poof! That version of the story is crumpled and tossed. The next night, we're free to write an entirely different story.

I've been tempted to write down some of B's interpretations of the pictures....but I think that might be cheating. It just makes my heart swell to see her developing the craft of storytelling in her 3-year-old way. She certainly has the imagination for it.

There are other wordless books out there. Have you seen them? Any suggestions to add to our wish list?

5 comments:

Sarah said...

I love wordless books -- I'll have to look for this one!! My absolute favorite, hands-down, is "Good Dog, Carl". It actually has two sentences -- one at the beginning and one at the end, but the pages in between are adorable and if your little one likes dogs, you guys would love this book. OK, I now feel like I sound like the kids giving book reviews on Reading Rainbow :)

Jes said...

Ahhh yes, we went through a period when we were only allowed to "read" a wordless book. This was back when Austin wasn't talking, and honestly, it got tiring for me! It hasn't stopped in our many forms of Muck The Dump Truck stories, T Rex Stories, and most recently Wally the Trolly stories :) The book was strange though...a girl and dad go hiking on a native island, go up a hill, find a huge gorilla swinging, the girl becomes friends with the gorilla, then the people get the gorilla to chase them back to the ship where they give him a giant inflated banana and the girl goes safely home. The Gorilla and girl are sad to leave their new found friends, so she takes a picture of herself and sends it to him. Amongst other things, there are captains, turtle races, airplane rides and cliffs to fall off of. It's a strange one! I'll send you the title as I would LOVE to hear B's interpretation!

Jes said...

The Great Ape by Krahn. That's the strange little book :)

The Poyers said...

I love this book and give it as a gift frequently! To add to what Sarah said I love Happy Birthday Carl. I'm assuming its by the same author and is about a Rottweiler. It's fabulous for their little imaginations!

Benedicte said...

Just got here from Ohdeedoh :) To answer your question, my son (2) is fond of Polo : http://www.amazon.com/Adventures-Polo-Regis-Faller/dp/1596431601/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1291404011&sr=1-1 . Now I'll go back to my discovery of your blog :)

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