Tiny Jumps In

Guba. Nov. 2020. 34p. pap. $7.99. ISBN 9781946747006.
K-Gr 4–Tiny, a Bengali girl, lives with her older sister on the shores of a blue lake. One day, Tiny decides to be brave and dive in. As she plumbs the depths of the lake, she encounters an assortment of unique creatures beyond her wildest imagination. The book’s somewhat esoteric nature and bizarre compositions are almost entirely flat planes of color. In Tiny’s world, these are primary: the sky is blue, the bathing suit is yellow, a bird is red. Underwater, Tiny encounters alien-like creatures in secondary and tertiary colors, which she hasn’t seen on land. The deepest point of the lake is populated by creatures spanning the spectrum. There are inconsistencies in the art. Tiny’s proportions vary on each page, so that her age is mysterious; in one scene her eyes are wide as saucers, in the next her head is ridiculously small. Her facial expressions occasionally don’t match the text. Russell’s note speaks to her influences—David Lynch and color theory. That explains the intention behind the incoherence, but not its amateurism.
VERDICT This book’s allure will be invisible to the elementary school set.

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