Don't Look Now

Don't Look Now

by Ed Briant
     
 

What's that behind you?

Two brother each have something the other wants, and in order to get it they point and yell the only words in this playful book: "Don't look now but..." When one brother turns around the other laughs and grabs the object of his desire, but as the game escalates odd things start to happen... Dramatic candy-colored artwork and a

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Overview

What's that behind you?

Two brother each have something the other wants, and in order to get it they point and yell the only words in this playful book: "Don't look now but..." When one brother turns around the other laughs and grabs the object of his desire, but as the game escalates odd things start to happen... Dramatic candy-colored artwork and a freewheeling narrative make for a fresh take on sibling rivalry.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“Colors are vibrant and add energy to the story, while changes in perspective (the dragon seems enormous) add excitement.” — School Library Journal

“In this near-wordless, comic book–style picture book, Briant offers an action-filled story about two brothers whose pranks and play take a turn toward the fantastic.” —Publishers Weekly

“The tale moves quickly, but the comic-book-style design and art encourage the reader to slow down and really read the illustrations in order to fully understand the story. With just a few printed words to decode and the action made completely clear through the pictures, the emergent reader can easily figure out the plot.” —Horn Book

“Briant’s bright palette and storyboarding expertise produce kid-pleasing results wry enough to elicit adult chuckles.” —Kirkus Reviews

Publishers Weekly

In this near-wordless, comic book-style picture book, Briant offers an action-filled story about two brothers whose pranks and play take a turn toward the fantastic. Initially, each boy tries to steal something (a toy sailboat, a tricycle) from his brother by convincing his sibling that there is something terrifying behind him-a giant serpent (actually a garden hose), a dragon (a small bird). The repeated refrain, "Don't look now but there's a...," takes on new meaning, however, when the earth splits beneath the boys, dropping them into a strange world of blue trees and actual (though none-too-scary) monsters. Briant's cartoony characters, human and monster alike, convey plenty of emotion, though there's little difference in personality between the boys-neither is more angry, scared or resourceful than the other. The picaresque plot-including a multiple-monster chase scene-keeps the pages turning until the boys return home safely, just in time for bed (Briant thematically grounds the fantasy by picturing their room filled with toys and books that have obviously inspired their imaginative trip). The boys' adventures may be outlandish, but their fraternal interactions are true to life. Ages 4-8. (May)

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Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
"Don't look now but there's a�" plus sound effects are the only words in this wild, comic-book-style adventure of two brothers out to "get" one another. In a wading pool together, the tow-headed kid, envious of his brother's sailboat, tries to frighten him by describing a threatening snake-like monster. When it turns out to be only a hose, the angry, dark-haired brother takes off on his bike, leaving the "don't look now�" warning of a dragon. The two continue to trade overblown warnings and angry retaliations until they fly up into the air in their imaginations for more adventures with creatures galore. The brothers end up in reality being plucked from their pool and put to bed, but their creatures are still splashing in the pool. This textless comic adventure is presented in a variety of frames from a double-page jungle landing to a sixteen-sequence episode on a volcano. Briant uses light tones of transparent watercolors and nervous black line drawings to keep the tale lighthearted and moving. The cartoon-like brothers lead us through their wild collaborative fantasy. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal

K-Gr 2

In this nearly wordless flight of fantasy, two brothers with very active imaginations begin an exciting day in a plastic wading pool where one of them sails a boat. The other child, envious of the toy, points to the garden hose filling their pool and distracts his sibling with notions of a monster lurking overhead. The boat owner turns away, and his boat is snatched. The competitiveness continues, culminating when the boys are served ice cream. The envious boy perceives that his sibling's serving is bigger than his, and in their struggle over the larger bowl, the ice cream flies off the table and into a tree, where a bird tries to hatch the freezing "eggs." Here the boys enter a fantasyland where they are chased by monsters and need to work together to escape. Briant has used a graphic-novel style with cartoon illustrations. Colors are vibrant and add energy to the story, while changes in perspective (the dragon seems enormous) add excitement. Interesting details flesh out the story, but it might leave many children wondering about the sudden switch from reality to fantasy play.-Mary Hazelton, Elementary Schools in Warren & Waldoboro, ME

Kirkus Reviews
Minor greed, outsized imaginations and a couple of boys collide in almost wordless sequential panels suggestive of James Stevenson, Jon Agee and Mad magazine. On a tiny patio, two playmates tussle over stuff-a toy ship in an inflatable pool, a bike, bowls of ice cream. Each kid snaggles the other's temporary possession via the time-tested technique of shouting, "Don't look now but there's a..." Conjuring a giant snake, a winged dragon, a striped tiger and more, one boy fleeces the other until-yikes!-their umbrella table plummets through cracking concrete to a creature-teeming milieu surpassing their wildest invocations. In the volcanic jungle where they alight, that contested bike dangles precariously and an ice-cream bowl perches in a tree, freezing the tuckus off a bird that mistakes it for a nest of eggs. When the ice cream attracts a monster, the boys flee-pedaling, diving and bursting upward, to bunk beds, books and-one gathers-rumpuses to come. Briant's bright palette and storyboarding expertise produce kid-pleasing results wry enough to elicit adult chuckles. (Picture book. 5-8)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781596433458
Publisher:
Roaring Brook Press
Publication date:
05/12/2009
Edition description:
First Edition
Pages:
32
Product dimensions:
8.60(w) x 11.10(h) x 0.40(d)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

ED BRIANT lives in Portland, Maine.

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