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Mamoko    by Aleksandra Mizielinska & Daniel Mizielinska order for
by Aleksandra Mizielinska
Order:  USA  Can
Candlewick, 2013 (2013)
* * *   Reviewed by Bob Walch

Kudos are in order to this creative duo for devising a book that allows the youngster to use his or her imagination to create the story to accompany the full pages of illustrations. There is a framework suggested at the beginning of the book that will guide the child but there is no obligation to follow it. After Mamoko's quirky cast of characters is introduced and a framework is provided for dealing with the artwork, you can do what you want.

'Tonight is the Town Carnival, but will everybody be able to go? Use your eyes and follow the adventures of each of these characters in every scene. What other things can you see page by page? A pencil? A piece of cheese? A skateboard? Which things look out of place? But that's not all! Who has lost their apples? Can you help them find them?'

After these general comments located on the inside cover, there are specific comments that relate to the characters: 'Magical Miss Chubb is on the move. What's hidden in her mystery box? Claude Van Clue is on the case. What mystery needs solving?'

Now it is time to USE YOUR EYES and devote some time to carefully going over each of the two page spreads that present the detailed artwork of scenes from this imaginary town. If you want try to answer the questions posed by the authors or just make up your own story ... it is up to you what you do now. There's so much detail and interesting things going on here that a youngster age five and older can spend quite a bit of time mulling over each section of the book.

Thick board book pages also mean that this clever volume can withstand heavy use and my bet is that it will be used a lot!

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