Friday, 15 February 2019
ReadItDaddy's First Picture Book of the Week - Week Ending 15th February 2019: "The Wall in the Middle of the Book" by Jon Agee (Scallywag Press)
"The Wall in the Middle of the Book" by Jon Agee is one of Scallywag Press's first batch of (extremely impressive) releases, and it's a beautifully executed lesson in preconception, with such a simple story and mechanic that delivers an astute lesson in taking things at face value.
The story begins with a young knight, tasked with maintaining his side of a vast wall that does indeed feature in the middle of each page spread in the book.
The knight has heard stories of all the horrible things that dwell on the other side of the book - so as he dutifully goes about his maintenance business, we see all sorts of creatures gathering on the other side of the wall. A terrifying gorilla, a toothsome tiger and a hefty giant Ogre with a nasty looking club.
The knight thinks he's safe, and definitely on the right side of the wall. But is there really a right side or wrong side?
Suddenly things change very quickly, starting with a tiny trickle of water, then a flood - as the knight swiftly realises that his side of the wall might not be that great after all.
But rescue comes from an unlikely helping hand...
Jon's gift of producing an engaging story with a minimalist word count, simple illustrations but a whomping great big effective message really make this an impressive book for Scallywag to roll with in their initial offerings for 2019.
We really can't wait to see more from them, and their talented collective of creatives. This is really brilliant stuff.
Sum this book up in a sentence: The perfect book for teaching kids not to take appearances and situations at face value, delivered with visual aplomb and plenty of humour.
"The Wall in the Middle of the Book" by Jon Agee is out now, published by Scallywag Press (kindly supplied for review).