Review also includes:
Bread, **, Saviour Pirotta, 978-0750245487
Festivals, **, Lynn Huggins-Cooper, 978-0750245487
Journeys, **, Kay Woodward, 978-0750245524
Musical Instruments, **, Liz Gogerly, 978-0750245562
Pets, **, Liz Gogerly, 978-0750245548
It’s probably a good indication of your age if you remember the ground-breaking Starters series published by Macdonald in a pre-Maxwell era under the direction of Dan Grisewood and Peter Usborne. It’s not clear whether Hodder Wayland are hoping to reflect past glory some 30 odd years after the event, or believe they have hit upon an original new series title. Sadly there is nothing revolutionary about the design or photography here, although the typography tries hard to leap out of its constraints. The books are patchy, Journeys tending to meander about a bit before reaching its destination, and Music falling at the first hurdle by lumping the piano in with strings rather than percussion. Festivals trudges through a list of different celebrations, while Pets is remarkable for its lack of specific information on any one animal. Bread has a little more bite to it, but one feels depressed by the pictures of factory-made dough. Alone among this group Claire Llewellyn writes with poise and confidence in Bones and her clear grasp of the age level and apposite captions redeem the otherwise pedestrian design and photography.