Monday, June 18, 2007

Little Blue and Little Yellow

Title:Little Blue and Little Yellow
Author: Leo Lionni
Age group: 3-8 years

Creative, imaginative, colorful and fun - all pressed out of a simple storyline.

Imagine a parallel universe where colors are the human equivalents. Or rather, the characters in this book are all primary colors! Little Blue lives with papa Blue and mama Blue. This is illustrated by three blue blobs - small, medium and large. Extrapolate this for the entire story and you have a vibrantly colored book that will be hard for any child to resist. I guess I can safely conclude now that the illustrations are intuitive but still very uncommon.

Moving on, Little Blue's good friend and playmate is little Yellow, who lives across the street with his papa and mama. They play with each other and with their other friends, blobs in a multitude of colors. One day little Blue, unable to find his buddy around, goes searching for him. Ecstatic on finding him a little later, they hug each other and blend into a blob of green! After frolicking, they (now a single smear of Green ) go back home only to be unrecognized by both the Yellow and the Blue families. They both begin to cry, the green blob now diffusing into two separate pools of Blue and Yellow drops. Little Blue and little Yellow are back in their individual forms and they go back to their parents who have no trouble recognizing them. When the joyous families hug each other, their fusion results in more Green patches and the parents realize what must have happened. All is well that ends well.

As quite obvious, the book teaches colors. However it goes a little further in that territory and initiates the concept of blending colors to give birth to new colors. As also obvious, it is a short and sweet story about two good friends.

I picked up this book as I found the concept of using colors as characters interesting. What turned out to be more interesting is how my daughter seemed to accept the very same concept that appealed to me, quite nonchalantly. Do I say how amazing it is when a child's innocence and imagination is more lofty in front of a stereotypical grown up who is groping for something unconventional? I should confess, we both have our own reasons for racing for this book whenever we make the call to read together!


Praba Ram said...

What a treasure! Delightfully simple. On the title page picture, noticed there's a bit of green where the two colors intersect.

I want to mention Alphabet Tree by Leo Lionni. Yet another lovely book! I love the subtle peace and love messages he blends with his books aside from teaching key concepts..And his unique artwork!

Thanks for bringing Leo Lionni's work to the limelight! Awesome pick!

sathish said...

wow.. interesting..

When I started reading about this book in the review here - I was immediately reminded of book - FlatLand and thought this might be book for children regarding dimensions (like flatland).

sounds different though. Thanks for the wonderful pick.

Meera Sriram said...

Hi guys,

Glad you liked it. I am hoping to pick up more of Leo Lionni this summer.

Praba Ram said...

Flatland - now that's a whole other dimension we're talking about, isn't it? I for one needs help when it comes to understanding dimensions (ask my ED professor in college - he'll tell you..) great! may be I should introduce flatland to K early on..

p.s: I live in pointless pointland most of the time, and my hubby is my square who sees n dimensions and most often helps me see other dimensions..:-)

ranjani.sathish said...

This seems to be a very interesting book !! So imaginative to think of colours as friends and bringing out their relationship :-)

Anusha said...

nice concept! and so very simple..I think it would go well with the <3 crowd too - will look it up. Thanks, Meera..!

Sheela said...

The book surely seems like something my 2-yr old would enjoy, thank you for the find!
And, yes, it is indeed amazing that fresh little minds accept more willingly what jaded adult minds find unconventional...

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