"Leaving the Pictures Behind" appeared in the Week in Review section. The three-sentence piece caught my eye. Here are those three sentences.
"Picture books are failing. Publishers, it was reported last week, have cut down on the number of new titles, and sales are suffering.
Blame the recession, but also the increasing pressure on preschoolers to read chapter books.
Just imagine: Max is being told to put away his yellow-eyed monsters in 'Where the Wild Things Are.' Seems worth a wild rumpus."
We are visual creatures. There are very few of us who can survive without visual stimulation. Now, imagine how well a young child will want to look at something that has no visual stimulation. I think the publishers are trying to sail a boat without a rudder. They don't want to loose money, so they abandon the ship.
Maybe there's another interpretation, let's hear it.
I explicitly remember being 5 years of age, and drawing Max's room-jungle transformation, and then reinterpreting the scene several times over with my magic markers. I did this with many picture books, and to think that children would not have points of reference for the development of their imagination landscape as it pertains to storytelling, would be a shame. I hope that the decline in sales is due to the prevalence of second-hand book availability online, or the recession. I hope.
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