Tip of the Toes

November 11, 2013

Tip of the Toes. Lily Lexington. 2012. 21 pages. [Source: Personal copy}

I downloaded this book for free some time ago, but it has easily found its way into my daughter’s favorites list.

The book follows the main character as she attends ballet classes and prepares for her rectal solo. It’s educational in that it highlights common ballet moves, with basic instructions on how she completes them. I found this useful as a way to expose a child to the art of ballet without having to take them to a class.

The digital illustrations are a good accompaniment to the story. They’re bright and colorful, without being too busy. The gradients are subtle, but allow the illustrator to keep the drawings from getting overwhelming with different colors. I especially like the use of shadows throughout. It’s not something I usually notice, but the illustrator uses shadows for prominent aspects of some scenes, such as the audience during the performance. It’s something entirely random that I think really contributes to the feel of each drawing.

I think it’s helpful for young kids on so many levels because it addresses the experiences of being involved in any sort of extracurricular activity, the hard work and dedication that is required to succeed, and the fear of performing that some may experience. I used this with my daughter as she prepared for martial arts competitions and it made the conversation easier and more relatable.

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