BUILDERS AND BREAKERS by Steve Light

BUILDERS AND BREAKERS

by ; illustrated by
Age Range: 2 - 6
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KIRKUS REVIEW

A visual feast for construction-zone fans.

Endpapers designed to look like blueprints, along with detailed background art depicting buildings of various architectural styles at different stages of construction, invite readers to pore over each part of this finely crafted picture book. A frontmatter illustration depicts a man wearing a hard hat and kissing a woman goodbye. Their children play in the background, and when she realizes he’s left his lunchbox, she sends them out to get it to him. Unfortunately, the dad is so focused on getting to work as one of the eponymous builders that he’s oblivious to his children’s pursuit. It’s a bit jarring to see the small children traipsing about scenes of demolition and construction as the builders and breakers, all dressed in safety gear, go about their work. But Light’s loose style, the depiction of complete, underground dinosaur skeletons in a vertical cross-section of a digging scene, and then pictures of the kids joining their dad and other workers for break time atop a lofty beam inject enough whimsy to make the children’s exploits seem fanciful rather than dangerous. The latter scene is reminiscent of the famous 1932 black-and-white photograph Lunch Atop a Skyscraper, though it, like all other illustrations, includes rich gouache color. The family seems to be an interracial one, with a dad of color and a mom who presents white; the construction workers are racially diverse, and some appear to be women.

Build up storytime collections with this pick. (Picture book. 2-6)

Pub Date: Oct. 9th, 2018
ISBN: 978-0-7636-9872-0
Page count: 40pp
Publisher: Candlewick
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1st, 2018




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