Sign Off – Stephen Savage

 Sign Off – Stephen Savage, Beach Lane Books, 2019. 9781534412101

Format: Hardcover

Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 3

What did you like about the book? As night falls, the silhouette figures on street signs come to life and leave their two-dimensional home to interact with the world around them.  A deer leaps off a deer crossing sign to nibble on some leaves; the running boy on the “Slow : Children at play” sign jumps onto a playground swing; the roadwork guy uses his shovel to build a sandcastle.  Eventually all of these characters (and others) meet up and work together to remove the yellow circle from a traffic light sign and catapult it into the sky; it becomes the sun, and day begins again.  It’s almost like a modern day myth or pourquoi tale.  The full-page illustrations in this wordless picture book are simple, depicting a basic landscape that perfectly complements the solid black silhouettes.

Anything you didn’t like about it? The idea of imagining what the figures might do if they came off their sign is a very cool concept, I just don’t think kids will get the actual story line.  It also takes a long time to get to the part where the figures come together (each of the 7 signs featured has two 2 page spreads); kids might lose interest before they get there.

To whom would you recommend this book? Young readers might enjoy looking at it and coming up with some of their own ideas about the signs they see every day; I also think it might be an interesting project for elementary art classes.

Who should buy this book? Preschools, elementary school and public libraries

Where would you shelve it?  Picture Books

Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? no

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City and State: Leigh King, Lincoln St. Elementary School, Northborough, Mass.

Date of review: 6/11/2019

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