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Hippopposites: A Book Review

Hippopposites by janik coat, Published by Abrams Appleseed, 2010 (translation 2012)

Hippopposites is a clever opposites book that goes outside the normal up/down, small/large.  Well, ok it does have small/large, BUT it also has opaque/transparent, dotted/striped, and clear/blurry too.  This book has other opposites as well that are not usually found in this type of children’s book.

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The hippo is shaped simply and is simply wonderful.  I think it is the eyes that got me–this is one cute hippo.  There is a pair of opposites (soft/rough) that include texture for a young boy to feel.    I will note that there is an opposite for free/caged.  Now this may not bother most boys, but I know of one sensitive boy that was a bit upset by the picture of the hippo in a cage.

The board book is sturdy and rather large (approx. 8 X 9)  The pages are thick, glossy and high quality.   Young boys might think it is a bit heavy to hold or tote about but they will likely love it none the less.

The author, janik coat, is from Paris , France, and Hippopposites was originally written in French as Mon Hipopotame.  I am very happy that it was brought to the U.S. and I do hope some of her other books will be translated as well.  By the way, the hippo’s name is Popov–though that info is not included in the book.

This is a unique offering in the crowded field of opposite books.  I think you will be impressed with it.  Hippopposites will appeal to young boys who like animals and others who like all things opposite.