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Shirley Prasad

I Know Many Series SUNSHINE AND ACTIVITY BOOK Series Party Fun Book Series INDIAN ART PAINTING BOOK Series Thomson Press, New Delhi, 1979   Madhuban Series Vikas Publishing House, New Delhi, 1979.   Children's books specially for the very young Child, should be attractive, colourful and imaginatively presented. Thomson's two books in their I know Many series are just what children's books need to be. Both the books are delight­fully illustrated and have a minimum of script using easy words. The only snag is that at 10.50 each they are priced rather high—may be a soft cover edition would be the answer. Two other lovely books are Thomson's Story and Activity books on Trees and Flowers. There is an interesting story-as well as cut-out­-and-stick and ‘make yourself’ activities. These books are moderately priced, have charming illustrations and can be read again even after all the activities are used up. The ‘party’ books with punch out masks, decorations to make and games to play are an interesting idea. But I can not quite make out what age group could use these books. Some of the games are for very small children, but the hand­work, and activities suggested such as making a coloured candle are most un­suitable for that age. The books are colourful however and the masks alone should provide amusement to the small child. Priced at 3.00 each. Thomson's painting books are an un­pleasant surprise after the other books. They are fussy, over-crowded and some of the pictures- where the jagged edges of damages to the sculptures are depic­ted- are just grotesque. The aim of these books can also be questioned. Just how involved is the eight-year old in the cultural, historical and philosophical tradition of his country? And is a book requiring him to colour in minute detail outlined pictures from his ‘glorious’ heritage of art and sculpture the only way of arousing in him a curiosity and aware­ness of his cultural and social heritage. It is little wonder that these ‘art’ painting books are priced only at 1.95 each! Vikas have also entered the field of children's books. Their painting books, though not as fussy and detailed as the Thomson ‘art’ books are unimagina­tively presented. The drawings are un­inspired and flat and the covers dull and unattractive. Actually I disagree with this ‘outline’ concept of a child's draw­ing book. The ideal drawing book for ...

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