Kirkus Reviews QR Code
HELLO, GOOD-BYE by Arlene Alda


by Arlene Alda & photographed by Arlene Alda

Age Range: 5 - 8

Pub Date: March 10th, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-88776-900-9
Publisher: Tundra

Although it seems simple, the concept of opposites can be difficult for very young children to grasp. Alda’s attractive photographs won’t necessarily be a big help, featuring subjects as disparate as a palm tree on the beach and a stone Buddha being transported through the streets of New York. Most only carry a single-word description. Particularly for abstract ideas like “above” and “below,” the connection between pictures (in this case of one tree’s branches and a different tree’s roots) and words may be fuzzy at best. This doesn’t mean, however, that the book doesn’t work—it just doesn’t do what readers expect. It opens a world of possibilities for observation and conversation. Young listeners will be intrigued both by the unusual objects pictured on some pages and by the photographer’s creative view of more familiar items. Berries are sweet and juicy, yes, but soft? Of course they are, particularly when compared to pumpkins and squashes, but it’s still a novel way of seeing them, one that offers children (and adults) an enchanting new perspective. (Picture book. 5-8)