Oliver

Overview

Paper-over-board novelty book with a non-removeable ribbon that shows Oliver the egg on one side and Oliver the chick on the other in penultimate spread. "Oliver was an egg. There was nothing he could do about it.  He could roll to one side.  He could roll to the other.  He could even stand on his head.  But he was simply an egg and that was that.  Until one day, everything changed because miracles happen."

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Overview

Paper-over-board novelty book with a non-removeable ribbon that shows Oliver the egg on one side and Oliver the chick on the other in penultimate spread. "Oliver was an egg. There was nothing he could do about it.  He could roll to one side.  He could roll to the other.  He could even stand on his head.  But he was simply an egg and that was that.  Until one day, everything changed because miracles happen."

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
First published in Holland, this minimalist story created by the U.S. publisher of Handprint Books introduces Oliver, an egg whose options are few. "Oliver was an egg. There was nothing he could do about it." His mobility is limited ("He could roll to one side. He could roll to the other"), and his white, oval shape against blank white pages emphasizes his lackluster existence. But a ribbon mechanism in the final spreads (which feels a little superfluous) reveals Oliver's transformation: "one day, everything changed (because miracles happen)," and a yellow chick appears in place of the egg. The contrast between the self-conscious egg and the bright yellow chick underscores the miraculous nature of its transition. Ages 1–up. (Apr.)
From the Publisher

"(oliver)" contains crisp, attractive text and drawings, using space, light, and dark elegantly. Small children will delight in pulling open the sturdy pages and experiencing Oliver's transformation over and over." --School Library Journal
Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
The story of Oliver the egg is told in a small, square book with thick board pages. This construction makes possible the unusual surprise at the end. In only a few words per page, in large type, we learn the few things Oliver can do. We must turn the book to see him roll to one side or the other, or stand on his head. "But he was simply an egg and that was that." Until one day... And here in the tale, Oliver appears on a white satin ribbon. As the page is turned, "...everything changed." And on the ribbon we see a yellow chick instead of the white egg. On the back: "(...Because miracles happen.)" The photographed egg (and chick) appears alone on the clean starkly white (or in one case black) double pages with the terse text, encouraging us to add to the narrative. Readers might also try to make their own changing pictures. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
PreS-K—"Oliver was an egg. There was really nothing he could do about it." For the balance of this ultra-simple, paper-over-board book, Oliver remains an egg. He can roll to one side or the other, and even stand on his head. But not until the seventh of the eight spreads do things start happening. The graphic on a wide, pull-through ribbon turns from an egg…into a chick. The text continues onto the back cover, with this explanation, "(…Because miracles happen)." (oliver) contains crisp, attractive text and drawings, using space, light, and dark elegantly. Small children will delight in pulling open the sturdy pages and experiencing Oliver's transformation over and over.—Susan Weitz, formerly at Spencer-Van Etten School District, Spencer, NY
Kirkus Reviews

Picture-book minimalism is taken to an almost unnatural extreme with this avant-garde presentation of a very familiar concept.

Against a pure-white background sits a single photographed image alongside large letters reading, "Oliver was an egg." Readers see him in his pre-hatched state from all sides, together with the text. Oliver remains an egg until the book opens to reveal a thick ribbon threaded between the pages. On the first of these spreads, the egg sits on the ribbon. Turn the page, and the ribbon pulls open to reveal a sweet yellow chick next to a simple legend: "everything changed." The book indulges in an urbane kind of humor, and there is admittedly something sublime in its matter-of-fact, "There was really nothing he could do about it," when discussing Oliver's situation. The photographs in this book are also so perfect in detail that it's impossible not to want to feel the chick's downy fluff. That said, it's difficult to see what besides the novelty of the ribbon will appeal to children about this story. The presentation feels wholly adult, and children will find little here to recommend more than a single read.

The back of the book proclaims that what happens in this story is "[b]ecause miracles happen." Children may not be so sure.(Picture book. 4-8)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781935954019
  • Publisher: Lemniscaat USA
  • Publication date: 4/1/2011
  • Edition description: Translated, Illustrated
  • Pages: 16
  • Sales rank: 799,896
  • Age range: 3 - 2 Years
  • Product dimensions: 7.20 (w) x 7.20 (h) x 1.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Born and raised a New Yorker and still, Christopher Franceschelli is a long-time publisher, editor, and creator of children's books.  His inspiration for this book was the vivid memory as a seven-year-old watching a magician pulling a red ribbon out of one end of an impossibly little box- and then as the magician pulled on the other end, the red disappeared and a green ribbon appeared instead.  Christopher sought to recreate that sense of wonder in Oliver.

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