Shapes and colours by John Canty

cover image

Berbay Publishing, 2020. ISBN: 9780648529187. 32pp.
(Age: 0)+) Highly recommended. All the colours of the rainbow and many different shapes are beautifully illustrated in this lovely picture book from John Canty, the award-winning author/illustrator of the Heads and tails series.
Right from the beginning as the reader turns the cover, bright shapes appear, with the words, What's red? What's orange? What's yellow? What's green? and What's blue? Each sentence appears in a shape that matches the colour, so we see, for example, a green frog and a yellow banana, all designed for the young child to guess what the object is. Turning the page, the frontispiece has What's indigo? and What's Violet, and then the reader will guess that these are the seven colours that this carefully designed book will contain.
The shapes for each colour are coloured on a double page spread with the question in one big drawing in the centre. The child needs to guess what each picture is, and then when the page is turned, finds a detailed multi-coloured picture of each shape, with the main colour as the background. I especially liked the colour indigo, with its vivid picture of a beetle gracing the page.
New words will be introduced to the young child. For example on the page featuring What's orange, there are a couple of difficult shapes, and when the page is turned, the reader will find a picture of a popsicle, orange, safety vest, autumn leaf, pumpkin, traffic cone and carrot all surrounding a large picture of a goldfish.
This is an imaginative way of introducing different colours and shapes and is a book that will prove to be a keeper and one that may well be treasured and handed down to the next generation.
Pat Pledger