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‘We need the literature of other countries to expand our
horizons and stimulate our ideas. Without it, we are not only
diminished, we are starved’
(The Times, Magnus Linklater 29/06/05)
In the Forest
by Sophie Strady
Age Range: 6-8
This is an amazing and unusual novelty book from France. In the Forest everything is green, everything is full of life. The animals and birds roam the forest and a sloth sways gently in the leaves. Can anything spoil this tranquility?
One day the peace is shattered by a ‘metal monster’ that attacks the forest from all sides. The creatures are forced to flee and soon there is complete devastation. ‘In the forest everything is destroyed, everything is lifeless and the sloth has disappeared’.
In the Forest is a tall-format book depicting a three-dimensional pop-up forest that represents the world’s disappearing rain forests. It is a truly innovative way of getting an important message across in a simple and effective way. Despite the powerful imagery of the bulldozer attacking the forest, which diminishes in each spread, the book does end on an optimistic note when a man arrives to plant new seeds. Soon new green shoots spring up everywhere allowing the forest to eventually be restored –which can be seen by pulling the tab on the last page of the book.
Deforestation is an unusual topic for a pop-up book but it is done in such a clever way that children (and adults) will appreciate the imaginative paper engineering that tackles a difficult subject in such a unique way.