Dinosaurs by Benedicte Guettier.
Dinosaurs is an oversized board book with a big hole in the middle. Open to the first page:
"I love ferns," says Diplodocus. Crunch crunch."
And the hole? Right were the head of the dinosaur is. So you can put your face there and be the dinosaur, or have the child you are reading it to be the dinosaur. The big ending?
"Grrrrrrr! roars hungry Tyrannosaurus. "I could eat five or six dinosaurs! Who wants to be first?"
One of the things I love about picture books is the details that you don't get the first time around. The details that you pick up only by multiple readings and looking close. (Heck, I've done storytimes where I've asked kids to comment about pictures in a book and that's been the first time I've learned about some of the details!) What my third reading revealed: Tyrannosaurus is chasing after five dinosaurs, but all you see are the tails. Look closely at the shape and color of those tails, and you realize its the five dinosaurs that were introduced on the earlier pages.
This will be a great book to use for storytime. The pictures are simply drawn and are in bright colors, and it's interactive: both having the reader or the kids "become" the dinosaur thanks to the hole, but also because of all the great sound affects: "crunch, crunch" and "grrrrrrr!"
I googled the author to try to find out more about her. I knew from the tiny blurb on the back of Dinosaurs that this was originally published in Belgium. I found out that this book was published in the UK under the title Dinosaur Dinners. I also found out she is going to be at the 18th Vancouver International Writers & Readers Festival next week. Way to far for me to go, but it looks like a most excellent festival.
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