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Mirror [Hardcover]

Jeannie Baker

List Price: CDN$ 21.00
Price: CDN$ 15.16 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
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Book Description

Nov. 9 2010
An innovative, two-in-one picture book follows a parallel day in the life of two families: one in a Western city and one in a North African village.

Somewhere in Sydney, Australia, a boy and his family wake up, eat breakfast, and head out for a busy day of shopping. Meanwhile, in a small village in Morocco, a boy and his family go through their own morning routines and set out to a bustling market. In this ingenious, wordless picture book, readers are invited to compare, page by page, the activities and surroundings of children in two different cultures. Their lives may at first seem quite unalike, but a closer look reveals that there are many things, some unexpected, that connect them as well. Designed to be read side by side — one from the left and the other from the right —these intriguing stories are told entirely through richly detailed collage illustrations.

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Mirror + Home + Window
Price For All Three: CDN$ 41.32

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 48 pages
  • Publisher: Candlewick; Bilingual edition (Nov. 9 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0763648485
  • ISBN-13: 978-0763648480
  • Product Dimensions: 25.9 x 27.7 x 1.5 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 544 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #92,046 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Jeannie Baker is the author and illustrator of a number of children’s picture books, including the award-winning Where the Forest Meets the Sea. Born in England, she now lives in Australia.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars  15 reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Awesome idea and illustrations Jan. 6 2011
By SeaShell - Published on Amazon.com
I've become something of a wordless book junkie. I bring tons of them home for the kids and, as with other books, some hit the mark and some miss it. This one hit, but just barely.

Here's what we liked about it: The way the two stories, a life in Australia and a life in Morocco are presented, side-by-side with a similar story line, was ingenious. I love that the Moroccan story works right-to-left, just as it would were it written in Arabic, and the Australian story works left-to-right as in English. The illustrations are beautiful, and the story told through the pictures is an interesting one, to be sure.

Now my reservations: For my child, who is 4, the story line was a bit difficult to follow. It could have been the difficulty of following 2 story lines at once (he was similarly confused by Black and White, which has 4 concurrent story lines), or just the foreigness of the Moroccan story, or maybe the real issue was me and my desire for him to see the story as the author intended. At any rate, I found myself telling him the story to a greater extent than I normally do with wordless picture books. And maybe it is for that reason that he seemed far less interested in this book than he has been in his favorite wordless picture books. If you are using the book as a tool to help develop a child's storytelling skills, this may not be the best one out there. But as a way to learn a bit about the similarities and differences between two very different cultures, it is terrific!

ETA: A quick update - I've since read this book with older brother, who is almost 7. He was just the perfect age for it! He was able to follow the two stories simultaneously, and compare the pictures on each side of the page. He was able to catch important details, like a carpet in the Australian house that appears to be like the one the Morroccan mother weaves. He was able to make the connection between the pictures of the Morroccan family drawing water from their well, milking their cow and gathering eggs and the subsequent pictures of the family eating those things for breakfast. He absolutely loved the book.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rutgers University Project on Economics and Children Nov. 9 2010
By Yana V. Rodgers - Published on Amazon.com
An urban household in Australia wakes up to a new day and gets ready for the usual activities of work and play. A different rural household in Morocco, a country in northern Africa, also engages in their daily rituals to get ready for the new day. The activities of both families involve traveling to work, buying and selling items in the marketplace, and relaxing together at night. But the settings in which these activities occur differ markedly, with a car-ride through congested highways to reach the hardware superstore in Australia, and a donkey-ride through the barren landscape to reach the distant outdoor market in Morocco.

Mirror uses contrasting side-by-side visual images to highlight differences in economic development and social norms in an Australian city and a remote Moroccan village. Making the book unique is the use of Arabic as well as English to communicate the narrative, as well as a stunning display of collages made with materials such as sand, clay, fabric, and tin. This sophisticated art work stands on its own to communicate an important lesson about differences and commonalities across countries.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Magic Carpet Ride Jan. 12 2011
By Catherine W. Hughes - Published on Amazon.com
In Mirror, Australian author, Jeannie Baker, tells two wordless stories simultaneously, one in Australia and one in Morocco, in a double fold-out format. Like a mirror through time, the Moroccan boy's mother weaves a rug, while the Australian family takes it home from the "Magic Carpet Store." With beautiful collage artwork, the author-illustrator explores the difference between stranger and friend. This is a thought-provoking picture book for older children, ages 6-9, encouraging them to explore similarities and differences found around the world.
5.0 out of 5 stars Exceptional: creative and beautiful Jan. 21 2014
By EcoDesigner - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
What a beautiful children's book! I appreciate the creative design of the book, the concept (showing 2 children's lives on different sides of the world side by side), and the BEAUTIFUL illustrations. I appreciate how much it says without words. I've seen 1000s of children's book, and this is a great one!
3.0 out of 5 stars Not for Me Aug. 19 2013
By me - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I am a school librarian who was looking for a book similar to "A Country Far Away" from Nigel Gray that showed the differences between 2 cultures and which I truly love.
I was quite disappointed with this book mainly because it was quite awkward to read aloud. Having to hold both side of the book open while reading it to children is quite cumbersome and while I understand what was going on, quite often I had to explain it to the children as they looked at it. Maybe if it was just an individual reading it for themselves that would not be a problem but for a teacher....
I am sure that many people liked the illustrations the way they were done with fabric and such but to me they weren't that great.
All in all, not recommended for a classroom setting.

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