Review written by Toddle About VIP Club member, Charlotte Hale. ‘Shapes Colours Numbers’ by Dario Zeruto is a versatile and intriguing book for children. It is refreshingly simplistic in its design and doesn’t rely on popular children’s television characters or flashy gimmicks to set it apart. It is unlike any other book that I have seen and I have to say that I do like to encourage and grow my Son’s love of books by searching for and providing him with a variety of different and unusual books. On receiving the book I felt excited, as even on initial appearance you can tell that it is something special and has a good solid weight to it that only a good book can own. The book was enjoyable from the outset of its cover and throughout its entirety due to its wonderful texture and tactility and in this technological age this is not something that can be replicated on a device which makes sharing this book with your child even more precious.
The books’ experience starts when you remove it from its stylish slip cover, which in itself is interactive with its cut out shapes that your child can play with and use to learn shapes. The book then has colourful shapes in profile, which fit into the cut out spaces in the slip cover, again even from the books’ front cover it is instantly and joyously engaging grabbing your attention, drawing your interest and enticing you to continue your journey into the book. The next cover page contains the only words in the entire book, nine in total, which are the perfect amount to get you to delve in further and to answer the question “How many shapes and colours can you find inside?”. This lack of text only adds to its appeal as it provides space and opportunities for imagination and removes the limits of the books’ use. From here the book displays its untraditional opening and the body of the book is revealed after the cover is fully opened (to the right) and is a square white page split down the middle where each side opens separately but can be viewed together in a variety of combinations, with colourful shapes in relief. The book can be used for education purposes for learning colours, shapes, numbers and recognising patterns. It is quirky and unique and is an ideal platform for creativity and curiosity. The truly interactive qualities of this book and its playfulness and intrigue mean that really it is not only a book but is also a toy that is to be shared with and to be used to help your child to learn and grow. When I first showed this book to my 2 year old he couldn’t wait for me to remove the slipcover and enjoyed running his hands over and tracing the colourful shapes on the front. On opening the book and him realising that it was unlike books he had seen and that the pages turned differently his eyes lit up and I could see that he was enthralled. We started going through the book together choosing to look at it for shapes and he then took over turning the pages. His excitement was obvious and his full attention was focused on the book and its engaging and captivating bright colours and textures. He was engaged by the visual, physical and textural aspects of the book and he made this clear when he loudly exclaimed with a smile “Wow!”. This is definitely a favourite now, which I am very pleased with and we will use it to encourage and aid with learning. This would make a wonderful gift to be treasured and I would recommend this. Purchase from Amazon