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Listen Up: Do Books Need Illustrations?

Hiya friends, so glad you could join us for The Book with No Pictures, by B.J. Novak:





  1. One of the things that makes this book so cool is the way the author speaks directly to the reader as if they are in the same room. This technique is called breaking the fourth wall. You might have seen actors do this, when they look at the camera and talk or interact as if the audience can respond. See if you can notice Daniel Tiger breaking the fourth wall in this clip:











2. Each page of the book has text & nothing else. But the text is not small & squeezed together like you might see in a chapter book. It is big & bold...giving the reader cues (clues or guides) about how to read the words. (see how I did that? By putting the word "how" in italics, it makes you read it with emphasis). Righty, so font is another tool that an author, illustrator, editor, graphic designer & publisher can use to make a story even more awesome. The color, location & size of the font all make a difference in how we (the reader) experience the story. Even non-fiction books use font strategically. For example, words that are in bold help a reader skim through information to find key ideas.


Take a look at these pages, can you see how different font helps the reader to understand the mood or meaning of the words?


The Book With No Pictures, by B.J. Novak

The Pigeon Finds a Hot Dog! by Mo Willems

Goldilocks and the Three Dinosaurs, by Mo Willems

Grow Up, David! by David Shannon

Spiky, Slimy, Smooth: What Is Texture? by Jane Brocket

National Geographic Kids: Everything Rocks and Minerals, by Steve Tomecek


3. Whizpopper. Truffula. Runchible. Nonsense words can be a wonderfunnilyloo part of language acquisition. The Book With No Pictures includes nonsense words AND onomatopoeia! Challenge yourself to write an onomatopoeia poem.




So, what do you think? Does a book need illustrations? I guess we could debate that for hours...

According to Children's Literacy Foundation: Reading is even better then T.V. If you enjoy listening to a story but don't have anyone who can read aloud, grab your library card & check out one of a zillion excellent audiobooks from the collection. Fill these cold winter days with stories to spark your imagination!


Toodleloo, Kangaroos





Today's book was: The Book with No Pictures by B.J. Novak. You can watch the author read an excerpt of the book here. Visit the author's website to download & print this Boo Boo Butt mask

or watch the Spanish version of the book here.




Thanks to Pexels contributers for providing awesome video clips.



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