Seasons: A Picture Book Review

Seasons (2010) by Blexbolex

This is one of those books where I’m not even how to start talking about it.

Blexbolex (or BLEXBOLEX?) is a French artist. Blexbolex makes prints and is almost impossible to find online. According to Ask.com/Wikipedia he was previously a French comics artist. One of his other books called L’Imagier des gens was awarded the prize for “Best Book Design of the World” in 2008 at the Book Fair in Leipzig.

Seasons (2010) is his latest book. It has been brought to the US and translated into English.

Essentially Seasons is a series of pictures cycling through different seasons. One or two words are written across the top of the page in large, bold, pink letters and a corresponding image (which I think are made with some form of printmaking) is displayed below the words. Some of the images and phrases are straightforward (swim, sunburn) and some are more whimsical (caterpillar crawl, siesta).

The book has an interesting idea and, frankly, this review might be the only one you’ll ever read that isn’t glowing. That said, the whole thing felt very disjointed. While eventually the cycle of images and seasons does eventually order itself into some kind of sense, a lot of the pairings on each two page spread felt, for lack of a better word, random (especially in the first pages).

Blexbolex’s prints are interesting and, given the medium, fairly intricate, but on a whole the work was grim with an image of a forest fire and a car accident including among images of summer fruits and winter snow. Seasons is a clever book even including a nod to Manet’s famous painting “Luncheon on the Grass” in one image but this is one book that ultimately felt a little too clever.

*This book was received for review from the publisher, Enchanted Lion Books.*

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2 thoughts on “Seasons: A Picture Book Review

  1. Thank you for your review. I do feel like it’s tougher to write a review that isn’t glowing than to rave about a book, so GOOD FOR YOU!

    The printmaking aspect of the graphics of the book make it kind of unique so maybe that is why it won an award?!

    Anyway, thanks for your review. If it turns up in my travels, I will check it out for myself.

    Pragmatic Mom
    Type A Parenting for the Modern World

    http://PragmaticMom.com
    I blog on children’s lit, education and parenting

    Like

    • Thanks, as a friend explained it to me sometimes the important thing is being able to admit–out loud– that the emperor has no clothes on, as it were.

      Like

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