'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Friday 19 November 2010

Review: H.O.U.S.E.

I have a new infatuation… it’s Gecko Press (New Zealand) and their incredible line-up of sensational, artsy, whimsical books, which they republish from talented authors and illustrators all over the world.

And nothing typifies the Gecko book style more than H.O.U.S.E.

This quite extraordinary book ticks all my book-love boxes. Bright, interesting, charming, funny, unique, inspired, fabulous fun – DIFFERENT. Written by two young Polish graphic designers, this very first book is hopefully just the beginning for this highly artistic duo.

Basically a look at contemporary architecture, this superbly-designed book covers 35 houses from around the world – and these are not your typical roof and four walls. These are the most extraordinary types of houses you can imagine – and children will be riveted.

Opening with an explanation on how to use the book, the authors provide us maps of the world so we can see where each house comes from. Then we’re given a key and are invited to wholeheartedly plunge in.

And what a trip. We meet a bubble house, a moon house, an inflatable house, a water house, a starry house, a zigzag and caterpillar house – even a nut house, which is a pod-like structure in a tree.

Fascinating descriptions, maps, diagrams, notes, arrows and quirky illustrations lend visual stimulation. There’s even portrait drawings of the architects responsible for these amazing dwellings, bringing a personal touch to their creation.

This book is priceless in that it exposes children to the fascinating world of architecture, and also teaches them to think outside the – er… box. Although classified as a children’s book, H.O.U.S.E. would equally fascinate adults.

I’ve found a new home and it’s inside the pages of H.O.U.S.E. Love it.

Title: H.O.U.S.E.
Author/Illustrators: Aleksandra Machowiak and Daniel Mizieliński
Publisher: Gecko Press, NZ$39.99RRP
Publication Date: 5 November 2010
Format: Hardcover
ISBN: 9781877467660
For ages: 6 – infinity
Type: Picture Book/Information Book/Non-Fiction

You can buy this book online