In a set of side-by-side scenes made with scads of small toys, buttons, stones, plastic letters or craft materials, Kontzias invites viewers to spot which items have been moved or removed.
The components in each pair of photographed scenes are thematically related, from dinosaurs in one to colored pencils, seashells, toy vehicles, or birds and blocks in others. Design fumbles make these tests of visual memory and counting skills even more challenging. “Answers” at the end are only partial, as they identify the changes in each pair of photographed tableaux but not their locations within them. Moreover, though each spread offers a hint (“0 things are new, 11 are gone, 0 moved”), along with the difficulty of keeping the tallies straight—there are 28 changes on one spread!—the terminology isn’t always consistent. A toy gorilla’s arm that goes from partially to fully visible is designated “New,” for instance, whereas seashells that are turned over count as “Moved.”
What’s “not-the-same” as any given I Spy title? Not much. (Picture book. 5-8)