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posted March 23, 2006
Red Window, 28 pages, $12.95
It's not every day you get to see a brand new format, and the on for this tribute by Morse to the animator Maurice Noble is quite lovely -- a children's book-style volume, oblong shaped, on thick cardstock, with poetry on the left and an illustration on the right. No one familiar with this book would blame anyone for picking it up and immediately wondering what an artist other than Morse could do with it. It's that clever and attractive. Morse makes good use of the size of the pages with his art, which employs any number of color and textural effects in almost collage-like imagery. Morse's art may not please everyone, but it's refined and accomplished, and I'm pretty sure it pleases him.
This book is also as easy as hell to review. The litmus test as to whether you'll want to purchase comes down to how you feel about the poetry. Here's a sample page:
I'd Wear My Baseball Cap All Wrong,
Its Bill Turned Back Behind Me.
"You Look Like a Jerk," Was What He'd
Always Promptly Then Remind Me.
He'd Pass My Room Each Afternoon
And Do A Little Dance,
Then Off He'd Go To Shake Hands
With That Old Friend In His Pants
If you enjoyed that, the book is filled with similar, tongue-in-cheek, rhyme-making and slightly saucy comedy. If you ran screaming from the room at around "Baseball Cap," then no matter how much you like Morse's art I'd say skip it. Me, I have a free book that I look at the pictures a lot. It's enough for me, but may not be for you.