Du Iz Tak? is more than just Carson Ellis’s trademark highly detailed, whimsical artwork. The creatures in her miniature forest speak a different language, so kids get to wonder over the mystery of words and story, using their imaginations to fill in the blanks. It’s smart, inventive fun. Recommended By Gigi L., Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
Du iz tak? What is that? As a tiny shoot unfurls, two damselflies peer at it in wonder. When the plant grows taller and sprouts leaves, some young beetles arrive to gander, and soon—with the help of a pill bug named Icky—they wrangle a ladder and build a tree fort. But this is the wild world, after all, and something horrible is waiting to swoop down—booby voobeck!—only to be carried off in turn. Su! With exquisitely detailed illustrations and tragicomic flair, Carson Ellis invites readers to imagine the dramatic possibilities to be found in even the humblest backyard. Su!
The creator of Home turns a droll eye to the natural world, with gorgeous art and a playful invented language.
"In a wordless coda of successive double-page spreads we are comforted by the cycle of the seasons. By the final words, "Du iz tak?" we are fluent speakers of Bug. Completely scrivadelly, this is a tour de force of original storytelling." Horn Book (Starred Review)
"Viewers follow the unfurling of an exotic woodland plant through the actions and invented language of beautifully coiffed and clothed insects....This is certain to ignite readers' interest and imaginings regarding their natural surroundings. Following the minute changes as the pages turn is to watch growth, transformation, death, and rebirth presented as enthralling spectacle." Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)
"Ellis (Home, 2015) elevates gibberish to an art form with her brilliant account of a few bugs, who discover a green shoot sprouting from the ground....Readers and pre-readers alike will find myriad visual cues in Ellis’ splendid folk-style, gouache-and-ink illustrations that will allow them to draw meaning from the nonsensical dialogue, as well as observe the subtle changing of the seasons. The entire story unfolds on the same small stretch of ground, where each new detail is integral to the scene at hand. Effortlessly working on many levels, Ellis’ newest is outstanding." Booklist (Starred Review)
"Ellis’s (Home) bewitching creation stars a lively company of insects who speak a language unrelated to English, and working out what they are saying is one of the story’s delights...Very gently, Ellis suggests that humans have no idea what wonders are unfolding at their feet—and that what takes place in the lives of insects is not so different from their own. Has there ever been anything quite like it? Ma nazoot." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)
About the Author
Carson Ellis is the author-illustrator of the New York Times bestseller Home, her debut solo picture book. She is also the illustrator of The Composer Is Dead by Lemony Snicket and Dillweed’s Revenge: A Deadly Dose of Magic by Florence Parry Heide, and she collaborated with her husband, Colin Meloy, on the best-selling Wildwood series. Carson Ellis lives with her family outside Portland, Oregon.