April 7, 2016
Who Done It? by Olivier Tallec
Who Done It?
by Olivier Tallec
I wasn’t sure what to expect when I requested Who Done It? from the library catalogue. The trim size of the book itself is unconventional — my guess is roughly 6 inches by 11 inches. It is a horizontal format, bound along the top edge. When I had the book in hand, I still wasn’t sure what to expect. The cover is heavy cardboard trimmed like a board book but the pages aren’t board book stock although they are heavy paper.
What the heck. I decided the best way to figure out what is what was to read it.
“Who didn’t get enough sleep?”
“Whose pulling a prank?”
The text on each spread asks the young reader a question. Who is doing . . . whatever? The reader then scans the 8 to 10 characters to discover who is doing what.
They all take a bit of reasoning. Is the sleepy character the one leaning on the sofa or the one leaning against a friend, eyes closed? What is a prank? Does a prankster wear a Viking helmet? Or might he be the one making bunny ears behind a friend’s head.
Tallec is primarilly an illustrator and his books reflect that. The text is extremely simple while the illustrations are what pulls the reader into the story. His work is done in acryllic paint and pencil with silly, big-headed characters that are cartoony while expressing a full range of emotions from worry to glee.
This is a an excellent book to share with a young reader who is learning to make her way in a world full of new people and lot’s of confusing emotions and social cues. No, that isn’t what it’s about. The book itself is a lot more fun that that but it will also lead to some great discussions about what each character is doing and who is “it.” Hint: There may be more than one.
And, just in case you can’t agree? Tallec has provided an “answer key” at the end.