UNKA, Vasanti The Boring Book Puffin, 2013 unpaged NZ$25.00 ISBN 9780143505754 SCIS 1632731
Do you remember the most boring book you have ever attempted to read? Here’s your chance. The opening spread cleverly uses paper engineering to present a mini book of 4 pages of ‘unexciting, dreary and dull’ words published by Monotone Press! Authenticity is added by a Whakatane Public Library stamp on the spread. Words, as we know, give life and here they come alive and rebel against monotony. They are tired of standing in rows and want to have fun instead. From playfulness with font to acrostic poems, words get excited. But the book itself can be a prison and the words want freedom. They escape the book and there the real problem happens! What if there was no control over words and they got all mixed up (and said some fairly subversive things)? What if there was a cacophony instead of monotony? Words were banished by the people. Nothing like people power. Imagine life without words? What would happen?
The final two double-page spreads are pure delight. They challenge the reader to have fun and joy with words: even write their own book! This book is wonderful and a must for any parent or creative writing teacher who want to excite children with the power of words. This is a fun way for children to start their own catalogued book and add it to the school library! This is the metafictive post-modern picture book at its best. Highly recommended. JMcK