Synopses & Reviews
Ducks growing out of bananas? A mouse catching a cat? Whats wrong with this book?
Yes, theres something strange, something funny and even downright preposterous on every page of this book But its not a mistake its nonsense! And its also surrealism. Nonsense lies at the heart of many beloved nursery rhymes. Children readily accept odd statements like the cow
jumped over the moon” and the dish ran away with the spoon.” This fanciful bending of reality is also basic to surrealism.
In this book, nonsense and surrealism combine to spark creativity and imagination. Whats true? Whats impossible? Whats absolutely absurd? From Eric Carle, creator of the classic, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, comes a book to make children laugh and think, preparing them for a
lifetime of loving both words and art.
Following on the heels of The Artist Who Painted a Blue Horse (an homage to the artist Franz Marc and expressionism) and Friends, with its semi-abstract artwork, The Nonsense Show forms a trilogy of sorts, dedicated to introducing young readers to different styles of artwork without ever overlooking the need to, first and foremost, appeal to children and their love of play. One of the true legends and pioneers of picture book making continues to expand and challenge the genre.
"A boy and a girl are fast friends: 'Together they played and ran and danced and told each other secrets.' When she moves away, the boy 'took a deep breath, counted to ten,' and sets out on an arduous journey to reunite with her. Using the hand-painted tissue paper collages that have been his signature for nearly five decades, Carle (The Artist Who Painted a Blue Horse) composes the core of the book impressionistically, employing the boy's literal and emotional viewpoints (while leaving the boy himself entirely unseen) as he crosses a wide river and a tall mountain, sleeps beneath skies filled with stars and clouds, and tries to remain steadfast in a forest, where 'Dark shadows danced around him. E-e-e-k!' The images are beautiful and evocative, but there may not be enough in this story to hold every reader. Although the boy reappears in the final pages (he emerges from a flower garden bearing a bouquet for the girl, whom he marries), very young readers may wonder where he went, while older ones may yearn to see him in action. Ages 3 5." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
From the creator of the all-time classic VERY HUNGRY CATERPILLAR comes a sweetly resonant story about the power of friendship--now available for little hands
When a best friend moves away, it can be painful for the child who is left behind. But the spunky boy in this upbeat story makes up his mind to find his missing playmate. Friends tells a story alive with love and perseverance, brightened with vibrant art and Eric Carle's trademark fostering of imagination.
Praise for Friends:
This story of love and determination is illustrated with Carle's extraordinary signature artwork. For anyone who would cross rivers and scale mountains for a beloved friend, this warmhearted story will create an emotional response. Young readers will learn the value of friendship and its many challenges.” School Library Journal
Often dynamic and quite beautiful . . . A picture-book tribute to the strength of childhood friendships.” Booklist
It's time for fun! The Nonsense Show
contains something playful, something silly, something downright preposterous on every spread. The inimitable Eric Carle has dedicated his latest picture book creation to one of his favorite art movements, surrealism. With wordplay and visual jokes galore, young readers will encounter a very different side of Eric Carle than the one they might have first met via The Very Hungry Caterpillar
or Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?
Following on the heels of The Artist Who Painted a Blue Horse (an homage to Franz Marc and expressionism) and Friends, with its semi-abstract artwork, The Nonsense Show forms a trilogy of picture books dedicated to introducing young readers to different styles of artwork without ever overlooking the need to, first and foremost, appeal to children and their love of play. One of the true legends and pioneers of picture book making continues to expand and challenge the genre.
About the Author
Eric Carle is acclaimed and beloved as the creator of brilliantly illustrated and innovatively designed picture books for very young children. His best-known work, The Very Hungry Caterpillar
, has eaten its way into the hearts of literally millions of children all over the world and has been translated into more than 25 languages and sold over twelve million copies. Since the Caterpillar
was published in 1969, Eric Carle has illustrated more than sixty books, many best sellers, most of which he also wrote.
Born in Syracuse, New York, in 1929, Eric Carle moved with his parents to Germany when he was six years old; he was educated there, and graduated from the prestigious art school, the Akademie der bildenden Kunste, in Stuttgart. But his dream was always to return to America, the land of his happiest childhood memories. So, in 1952, with a fine portfolio in hand and forty dollars in his pocket, he arrived in New York. Soon he found a job as a graphic designer in the promotion department of The New York Times. Later, he was the art director of an advertising agency for many years.
One day, respected educator and author, Bill Martin Jr, called to ask Carle to illustrate a story he had written. Martin's eye had been caught by a striking picture of a red lobster that Carle had created for an advertisement. Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? was the result of their collaboration. It is still a favorite with children everywhere. This was the beginning of Eric Carle's true career. Soon Carle was writing his own stories, too. His first wholly original book was 1,2,3 to the Zoo, followed soon afterward by the celebrated classic, The Very Hungry Caterpillar.
Eric Carle's art is distinctive and instantly recognizable. His art work is created in collage technique, using hand-painted papers, which he cuts and layers to form bright and cheerful images. Many of his books have an added dimension - die-cut pages, twinkling lights as in The Very Lonely Firefly, even the lifelike sound of a cricket's song as in The Very Quiet Cricket - giving them a playful quality: a toy that can be read, a book that can be touched. Children also enjoy working in collage and many send him pictures they have made themselves, inspired by his illustrations. He receives hundreds of letters each week from his young admirers. The secret of Eric Carle's books' appeal lies in his intuitive understanding of and respect for children, who sense in him instinctively someone who shares their most cherished thoughts and emotions.
The themes of his stories are usually drawn from his extensive knowledge and love of nature - an interest shared by most small children. Besides being beautiful and entertaining, his books always offer the child the opportunity to learn something about the world around them. It is his concern for children, for their feelings and their inquisitiveness, for their creativity and their intellectual growth that, in addition to his beautiful artwork, makes the reading of his books such a stimulating and lasting experience.
Carle says: "With many of my books I attempt to bridge the gap between the home and school. To me home represents, or should represent; warmth, security, toys, holding hands, being held. School is a strange and new place for a child. Will it be a happy place? There are new people, a teacher, classmates - will they be friendly? I believe the passage from home to school is the second biggest trauma of childhood; the first is, of course, being born. Indeed, in both cases we leave a place of warmth and protection for one that is unknown. The unknown often brings fear with it. In my books I try to counteract this fear, to replace it with a positive message. I believe that children are naturally creative and eager to learn. I want to show them that learning is really both fascinating and fun."
Eric Carle has two grown-up children, a son and a daughter. With his wife Barbara, he lives in Northampton, Massachusetts. The Carles spend their summers in the nearby Berkshire hills.