Friday, September 24, 2010

Children’s Books: Spork by Kyo Maclear and Isabelle Arsenault

Spork’s mother was a spoon and his father was a fork, the resulting upheaval seems inevitable. After all, where does Spork fit? He is neither spoon nor fork, something that creates a problem when we first arrive:
In his kitchen, forks were forks and spoons were spoons. Cutlery customs were followed closely. Mixing was uncommon.
Spork, as a result and somewhat predictably, doesn’t easily fit into the cutlery drawer. Just what is he? He goes through a period of well-illustrated turmoil and indecision, that culminates in the arrival of the answer to all of Spork’s questions and, in the end, he discovers exactly where he fits.

Author Kyo Maclear calls herself a spork. From her bio: “The daughter of a British father and a Japanese mother, she conceived the story of this mixed utensil with her husband to commemorate the birth of their first son.”

While Spork (Kids Can Press) is Maclear’s first book, illustrator Isabelle Arsenault is a talented veteran who has brought her whimsical talents to many books and even won the Governor General’s Award for illustration. Spork is sweetly whimsical and non-preachy.

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