Synopses & Reviews
Primo primate artist Anthony Browne is at the top of his form with a simple — and simply fascinating — array of creatures for kids to count.
What better attention-getter for small children than primates in all their variety? And who better to render them than Anthony Browne? In this elegant counting book, the author-illustrator outdoes himself with a vivid presentation of primates from gorillas to gibbons, macaques to mandrills, ring-tailed lemurs to spider monkeys. With his striking palette, exquisite attention to detail, and quirky flair for facial expressions, Anthony Browne slyly extends the basic number concept into a look at similarities and differences — portraying an extended family we can count ourselves part of.
"Former U.K. Children's Laureate Browne has always been interested in primates, as books like Gorilla and his Willy the Chimp series have made clear. Now, the static nature of a counting book allows him to devote maximum attention to each animal, from a single gorilla to 10 lemurs. Each arresting portrait fills a full spread against a backdrop of white. Larger, rarer primates appear first, progressing to smaller, more numerous species like macaques and colobus monkeys. The key to the book's impact lies in the dignity of a portrait sitting that Browne confers on creatures more commonly seen behind glass walls. Every face has a discernible personality. Even the lemurs are distinct individuals, with variations in snouts, eyes, and ears. Browne follows the series with a meticulously painted closeup of another primate himself and then a group portrait of humans of many ages and ethnicities. 'All primates. All one family. All my family,' he writes, 'and yours!' Browne's work exemplifies the way close observation of animals leads, for both artist and viewer, to deepened respect and, as he hopes, to a sense of kinship. Ages 3 up." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
About the Author
Anthony Browne, a recent British Childrens Laureate, has received many awards for his work, including the Hans Christian Andersen Award in 2000 for his services to childrens literature. He has written and illustrated more than forty books, including Little Beauty and How Do You Feel? Anthony Browne lives in Kent, England.