{published 2013, by LB Kids/Little Brown Books for Young Readers}

Remember Salina Yoon and her heart-tangle-upper Penguin and Pinecone? Well, she’s back in a big way this week. Tomorrow, April 16th, she has two brand new books out in the world, and trust me: they are spectacular. Penguin’s back in a new adventure, Penguin on Vacation. He’s sick of all the snowy cold, and sets off on a beach adventure. Don’t miss it!

And then there’s this one. I got a sneak peek of Pinwheel and let me show you this thing!

Die cut cover, in the shape of a pinwheel. A hint at the ingenious things to come!

What you might not know about Salina is that she is a master of novelty board books. The engineering to make these books tactile and animated on top of just utter gorgeousness? Her brain. Her artistry. Brilliant.

Pinwheel’s pages have a dial on the edge of the page. Those bright triangles lead you in a twirling direction, and when you do, the magic happens. On this particular page, those scales shimmer and change colors as if you were under the sea with them, swimming into a different beam of light with each flick of your tail.

So here, the train’s lights alert you to its journey. And see her words? Simple, lyrical, and beautiful.

But then. Just when you think you understand how this book works, this happens. A carousel horse! Pops his head out of the page and bobs up and down, up and down, up and down – until you are ready to turn the page …

…where there’s a kite dancing in the wind. Of course there is!

Pinwheel is a knockout. {And no, I didn’t really mean that to be a die-cut pun, but hey why not?! It’s kinda a good one!}

Its design is the story. Pinwheel asks you to interact, discover, and enjoy – and it’s a pleasure from the first spin to the last.

And if you are like me, and can’t get enough of this little treat, check out Salina’s Kaleidoscope. It’s unlike anything you’ve ever seen in a novelty book, I’m sure of it.

And! Just so you don’t have to only take my word for it, huge hot-off-the-presses congratulations to Kaleidoscope, first place winner of the novelty category for the Book Industry Guild of New York’s 27th Annual New York Book Show.

And with that, I leave you to it. You have lots of reading to do.


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14 thoughts on “Pinwheel

  1. OMG, I love it. I have a copy, too. When I got to the carousel page I thought “oh, the horse comes up but we’ll have to reverse the spin to get it to go back down.” And then, nope! My daughter kept turning the wheel in the same direction and the horse dipped down. I SHOULD HAVE KNOWN NOT TO DOUBT SALINA YOON! This book is amazing. I cannot even pick a favorite page. But my daughter’s favorite is the sunflower.

  2. Carter–WOW… thank you so much for your thoughtful DESIGN review of Pinwheel! I cannot take this smile off my face. It is SO satisfying to read, especially from a fellow designer.

    And Tara–YAY that your daughter kept spinning! The idea of circular motion was important here because I didn’t want a beginning and an end with each spin. One can spin as long as they’d like and the movement shall continue. Sunflower is my favorite spread, too! Please tell your daughter! :-)

    • I got CHILLS reading that you got chills! Thank you so much! Carter’s delicious photos set against the oh-so-inviting grass is not hurting it a bit!

      • And let’s be real…books are NOT the best photo subjects. Most just lay there and the white pages get all overexposed and I’m not smart enough with a camera to deal with it. And then there are YOUR books, which don’t just lay there. So good.

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