Pros: Inspires children to comment and speculate. Stunning Illustrations
Cons: No Hardback Version available
Often I teach Early Childhood Education, we operate a Pre-School for ages averaging 3-5.
On a weekly basis, interesting and successful (keeping pre-schooler attention) books and authors are reviewed/critiqued by those becoming certified as pre-school operators.
Yikes was a universal, hands down Hit! Both with the pre-schoolers at "circle-time" and teachers.
With a background in photography and fine arts, I was personally struck by the creative realistic style with which Robert Florczak presents page after page of exciting creatures. The vantage point of the observer in several compositions, was dynamic and unique... often looking up at the young adventurer from a scorpions eye view, or seeing the perspiration on the face of our traveler as he bites his nails in the presence of a cobra... magnified by the trees which tower into the distant sky.
In a word.. "masterful"
With children, we look for books which are short on text (which this book is) and long on igniting comments and discussion about what is going on and what we might do in similar situations... in this regard, I have presented no other book which caused so much enthusiasm from the kids. I think they also just like yelling out the title "Yikes".... along with "yippee-whee-wow-ooh" and other exclamations which allow us to show our surprised, frightened or relieved expressions.
If you have a young child, or run a day care or pre-school, this is a must have and sits proudly at the top of my stack of books which will bring youngsters out of a rainy day slump!
On the high end... if you are in the arts, or art education, Robert Florczak's illustrations are a master class in composition, form, perspective and dynamic color use!
In the end, though I've had the book only four days, I am one very impressed artist, photographer, father, teacher and FAN.
page-by-page excitement, adventure and artistic realism depicting creatures from around the world.