Circle, Triangle, Elephant! A Book of Shapes & Surprises by Kenji Oikawa and Mayuko Takeuchi

[Reviewed from Copy Courtesy of Phaidon]Circle, Triangle, Elephant

Circle, Triangle, Elephant! is the book to read when you want to see children laugh, then laugh even harder, and then laugh so hard you have to stop reading just to make sure they are okay.

Circle, Triangle, Elephant! begins as a very typical board book about shapes (triangle, circle, square), but then, surprise! an elephant, a boat, a face, a lemon, a bus, a face, a bird, etc. are slowly incorporated into the mix. There’s no apparent pattern or reasoning as to why and when certain items are used which adeptly adds to the surprise and fun.

Circle Triangle Elephant Interior 2

From Circle, Triangle, Elephant! A Book of Shapes & Surprises by Kenji Oikawa and Mayuko Takeuchi.

Circle, Triangle, Elephant! has a very simple premise, but with its utterly charming and beguiling illustrations, its perfect pacing, and its expertly placed surprises, is an uproarious read that easily puts children into hysterics.

Circle, Triangle, Elephant! is an inspired and refreshing addition to the world of board books. Just when you think you can’t possibly read another board book to your child about different shapes, Circle, Triangle, Elephant! comes along and makes reading about shapes interesting, fun, and absolutely hilarious. (My three-year-old son was laughing so hard the first five times we read this book that I could not stop laughing. He would give those full-on, life-affirming, completely uninhibited, infectious laughs. I thought maybe after reading it so much that he would find it less funny as it became somewhat more predictable for him, but that was not the case at all.)

Circle, Triangle, Elephant! gives adult readers and their very young audience members an interactive and playful experience. The reader is prompted by the font change to act like the non-shape is the most absurd and unheard of event in the cosmos. This makes little ones urgently shout out while laughing that something is different!!! — that an elephant (or boat, or face, or hat, etc.) is not a shape!

Circle Triangle Elephant Interior

From Circle, Triangle, Elephant! A Book of Shapes & Surprises by Kenji Oikawa and Mayuko Takeuchi

Circle, Triangle, Elephant! does an amazing job of keeping the readings hilarious and entertaining even after you have (and you certainly will) read this book a countless number of times. What can I say? The audience will demand it.

The illustrations are bright and energetic. They are so clear and friendly that they draw in little ones and inspire them to want to read it back to you. There’s an excitement and enthusiasm imbued into Circle, Triangle, Elephant! that is impossible to resist.

Circle, Triangle, Elephant! is an innovative and ingenius board book that is excellent in every way.

Recommended Ages 2 to 5. Phaidon. May 2017. 22 pages. ISBN: 978-0714874111 Board Book.

Where to Get it:

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Where Obtained:  I received a review copy from the publisher. No other compensation was received.  I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

FTC Disclosures:  Some of the links in the post above are Amazon affiliate links and others are IndieBound affiliate links. If you click on the link and purchase something, I will receive an affiliate commission at no additional cost to you. Which goes to fund my family’s picture book habit.  It’s a vicious cycle, but we manage.  I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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