Review of Stop, Go, Yes, No!: A Story of Opposites

Stop, Go, Yes, No!: A Story of Opposites
by Mike Twohy; illus. by the author
Preschool, Primary    Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins   32 pp.    g
8/18    978-0-06-246933-5    $17.99

The playful and energetic yellow dog from Twohy’s Geisel Honor–winning, alphabet-themed picture book Oops, Pounce, Quick, Run! (rev. 1/16) is back to create some more mayhem in this concept book demonstrating opposites. The story opens with a double-page spread of a gray housecat curled up peacefully on a chair; the only text on the spread reads, “Asleep.” A page-turn quickly disrupts this quiet moment as the rowdy dog bursts through an open window, and the text now reads, “Awake” — and it’s placed jaggedly on the page, as startled-looking as the cat it describes. A steady rhythm of straightforward opposites pairings follows, as the cat does everything in its power to shake off the persistent dog, returning its “Smile” with a “Frown,” for instance, and reacting to the dog’s “Silly” trying-to-be-entertaining antics with a “Serious” expression. Twohy’s cartoony ink, felt-tipped pen, and watercolor illustrations directly reinforce the text and are surrounded by ample white space. Additionally, the thoughtful placement of the book’s twenty-eight words supports meaning, such as “High” and “Low” being positioned at the top and bottom of their respective pages. As such, this silly picture book also functions as a seriously useful beginning reader.

From the July/August 2018 issue of The Horn Book Magazine: Special Issue: ALA Awards.

Patrick Gall
Patrick Gall works as a librarian for children in preschool through eighth grade at the Catherine Cook School in Chicago.

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