Reading/Interest Level: Preschool, Primary
Author: Jeanne Willis
Illustrator: Tony Ross
Publisher: Andersen Press USA
Have you ever stopped to think about what makes books so great? Books can serve many different purposes, from the imaginative (a hat) to the practical (stabilizers for short, wobbly table legs). Not Just a Book catalogs some of the creative ways a book can be used in fun and play but also dives into books’ emotional and intellectual value. The book’s self-proclaimed best thing turns out to be its ability to be read and loved by people.
Not Just a Book is chock-full of bright, expressive watercolor illustrations to accompany every potential use for books. This combination of playful, engaging text and whimsical illustrations creates a rich and inviting world for the main character to show off the majesty of the mighty book. The message that books are fun and useful and valuable in many contexts couldn’t be more timely and needful in today’s digital age. Not Just a Book is a must-read to help children start or continue to love books. It would be a great read-aloud for any venue, but seems especially well suited to library and classroom story time.