Thursday 4 May 2017

Children's book review : My First Discoveries - The Impressionists

My First Discoveries by Moonlight Publishing is a series of educational hardback books that target children aged 5-9. (I'd almost go so far as to say boardbooks but the cardboard pages are thinner than those in toddlers' boardbooks). Each title in the series takes young readers on a fun voyage of discovery to learn all about the physical, natural and human world around them, focusing on topics such as animals, space, firefighting and colours. We received The Impressionists to review and I was surprised to see just how fascinating 7-year-old Pierre found it.

The book takes a first look at this style of painting, introducing young readers to some of the famous artists and their work. It gives a brief description of what defines impressionism in a very child-friendly way, with short, simple texts and lots of brightly coloured illustrations.

It presents the favourite themes and some of the works of the most distinguished impressionist artists, including Courbet, Degas, Renoir, Monet, Pissaro, Sisley, Seurat, C├ęzanne and Van Gogh. I have to admit, I'm a bit of a heathen when it comes to art, so I think I learnt almost as much as Pierre !

Little learners are taken into the minds of the great artists, observing the way they portray city and country life, the sea, summer and winter, and their ability to catch fleeting moments with just a few brushstrokes.

It's a topic that could be overly complex for this age group, but it is presented in an enjoyable and simple way, using cut out pages and transparent overlays to make the illustrations come to life and make it all more interactive and fun.

Pierre's favourite feature was the visual quiz at the end of the book, which presents little details from several of the paintings featured that you have to go and find in the pages that you have just read.

For the price (£8.99), I must admit I was expecting a larger format - it measures 16.5 x 2 x 17.8 cm so is about the size of a square boardbook - but we did really enjoy reading it together, especially flipping over the overlay pages, and we learnt a lot of things that we didn't know about the subject.

star rating : 4/5

RRP : £8.99 (current price £6.29)

  • Spiral-bound: 32 pages
  • Age Range: 7 - 11 years
  • Publisher: Moonlight Publishing Ltd; Spi Rep edition (10 Feb. 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1851034501
  • ISBN-13: 978-1851034505
  • Product Dimensions: 16.5 x 2 x 17.8 cm

Disclosure : I received a copy of the book as a Boolino Friend, in order to write an honest review.

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