"GO! go! go! go! ... UH-OH!" - OK Go by Carin Berger
OK Go sounds and looks like a fun book about cars and transportation, but if you look closely at the "green" front cover with a bird juggling recyclables and take notice of the other characters holding plants, you'll get a better idea of what waits inside the cover. Tricky, tricky. I'll admit I was deceived by the title and the first few pages of sporty red cars galore, all go-go-going fast, fast, faster, that I didn't even notice them all spewing clouds of exhaust in their wake. Guess I just thought they were fluffy clouds in the sky. And then, UH-OH, things quickly get rather bleak and gray and the cars come to a screeching halt. Ah ha. The light bulb goes on in my brain. That will teach me not to read so fast and maybe slow down my life a little too. The things you miss by hurrying about. Better to take it a little slower like the book suggests and think about the consequences of your actions.
Carin Berger's book is the most visually interesting environmental awareness picture book that I've ever read to my children. Her masterful cut paper collage illustrations get the point across with the use of very few words. Actually, the entire first half of the book uses only one word,"GO!" My daughter really liked the repetition of the word Go! And, as should be in a book about green living, all the collages are made out of recycled scraps of paper. Ingenious! There's so much to look at in the detailed collages that even though the book is meant for children ages 2-5, older kids and adults will enjoy perusing the pages as well, searching for the car that says "change" or "mustard." If you look really closely, you'll find Berger's daughter’s name, Thea and several other names as well. A large fold-out spread toward the back, gives ideas on how to live a greener life with messages, like "Use your feet, Pete" and "Plant a Tree, Marie." A parade of flower carrying creatures in the back of the book hold signs listing other ways kids can take care of the environment.
School starts soon here and summer will come to an end. One of my very favorite autumn themed books is Berger's The Little Yellow Leaf. The captivating collage illustrations and tender story of a little leaf that hangs on until the end will touch your heart!
Speaking of not wanting to let go, my daughter's first day of school is next week. Inspired by Carin Berger, we created a bus collage out of the coupons and ads in the Sunday paper. Berger will be glad to know that we took the message of OK Go to heart. Like the character Gus, my daughter plans to take the bus and save on gas!
OK Go by Carin Berger. Greenwillow Books (April 2009); 32 pages; ISBN 9780061576669
Book Source: Review copy provided by for free by Carin Berger and Greenwillow Books. (View my full disclosure statement for more information about my reviews.)
Carin Berger Website
Carin Berger Blog
Interview with Tara Lazar
Thanks to Carin Berger, I'm giving away a copy of OK Go to a Brimful Curiosities reader.
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