The Big Book of Boats is a information book for children with high shelf appeal. Its bright and clear cover draws the eye and tempts you to open the book and discover more. There is a lot to discover within its pages too. The reader embarks on a voyage around the world learning as they go, exploring ships of all sizes and types from cruise ships to cargo ships from submarines to kayaks, from oracles to ice breakers. We learn about the history of boats, the adventures they have enabled and the battles they participated in. A book to enjoy, to share and to learn from.
The Big Book of Boats is crammed with information and yet also has considerable browsing appeal due to the vibrant illustrations. Luogo comune is the pseudonym of Jacopo Ghisani, an Italian illustrator and street artist and his distinctive style incorporates a great deal of detail. The text conveys much of the information in a readable and involving way and additional facts are displayed in captions and numerical keys to the double page spreads. This is not only relates to the boats and ships but related aspects such as maritime wildlife and people both historical and current who use these vessels. I learned a great deal from this book and it would be a valuable addition to primary school libraries and classrooms.
Originally published in Italian Catherine Bruzzone has done an excellent job in ensuring that this translation is appealing to a young audience. She wrote an article for the publishers, b small publishing, last year which I found interesting and you can read it here.
I should like to thank the Naomi Weeks at b small publishing for my review copy. The Big Book of Boats is published on 1st March and can be pre-ordered/purchased via the publisher’s website.