THE BIRD HAS BEEN DISCOURAGED.
IN FACT, SO SAD THAT IT HOPS OFF THE TABLE TO SEEK SOMETHING TO ENCOURAGE HER UP.
13 Words (Harper, 2010) reads as a Freudian in associations of word, delivered in a text current awareness as filtered through the brain of Daniel Handler aka Lemony Snicket, author of the best-selling A Series of Unfortunate Events, illustrated as if, in a State of impressionistic dream by the vivid paintings of Maira Kalman.
The product is a strange intensely and creative output which has skilfully demonstrates not only the literal meaning, but the feelings raised by thirteen words of the Snicket: birds, discouraged, cake, dog, occupied, convertible, goat, hat, haberdashery, scarlet, baby, panache, and mezzo-soprano. The plot, if this unusual book of images can be said to have one, implies a royal blue bird with a royal case of the blues, gradually reduced by the presence of mood strengthening cakes and a dog well intentioned and full of spirit, which diverts the moody Blue Bird with sweet snack:
"THAT HIT THE SPOT!" SAID THE DOG, BUT NOW I THINK YOU WOULD BE BETTER GET BUSY. »
And the bird is disabled for a ride in a convertible to select a hat with a haberdashery with a scarlet door managed by a baby (of course!). The hats are varied - a deerstalker was Sherlock, Scarlet fez, fur tall of a Beefeater and a hat high black spiffy - with great panache. Dog and birds are satisfied with their hats, but everything is forgotten when a mezzo-soprano (why not?) walks in with something tied up in a box - more cake! "How was your day?" it investigation as if they were old friends. Of course, it is time for cake more.
Although the bird, to tell the truth, is still a little discouraged.
It is a combination of words sly and games pure Snicketry of the kind that defines adults ask and that most children love. Illustrations of Kalman here are choices and completely fun, combining unlikely colours such as yellow butter and Rose and keep history quirky moving through this list of unusual words. Although an example of this kind of picture book, it lends itself to the sort of writing exercise teachers love in which students make up a story of a series of disparate words to its own needs. For another sample of engineering of Kalman, see his love tribute to American democracy and the pursuit of happiness.