Monday, January 9, 2012

Max's Castle

Kirkus Review starred (August 15, 2011)

Banks and Kulikov's Max is back in his third escapade of wordplay. Billing it as a sequel to Max's Words (2006) and Max's Dragon (2008), this author/illustrator team again presents a clever tale that embodies the possibilities of a child's imagination. When Max finds something amazing in a box under his bed-wooden alphabet blocks-he uses them to start building a castle. His two older brothers get into the act, and, lo and behold, WALLS become HALLS, a MOAT becomes a BOAT, PIRATES become RAT PIES, and BATTLE becomes BABBLE as the boys move the blocks, rearrange letters and transform words into a full-blown castle scenario. That is, until the castle comes under siege by a BLACK CAT turned BLOCK CAT ("It must smell the rat pies," says Karl). Playful perspectives, vivid colors and animated action are brilliantly executed with details that require a second look, then a third. Kulikov takes readers back and forth from reality to fantasy using the alphabet blocks as a bridge in inspiring fashion. The "king called his knights to the round table. And for their loyal FEATS he organized a FEAST. From the castle TAPESTRY he made PASTRY. And from the PARAPETS he made TEA." This homage to the power of imagination one ingenious and entertaining game of wordplay. (Picture book. 5-8)

No comments: