Images Copyright © Shinsuke Yoshitake. All rights reserved.
"STILL STUCK" by Shinsuke Yoshitake (Abrams Books for Young Readers 2017) has a great review in The New York Times!
Author Rumaan Alam in his review "These Kids Never, Never, Never Give Up", writes about the protagonist: "It's a relatable predicament, and his response is instructive: He learns to cope." For Alam, Yoshitake's ultimate message remains ambiguous: "keep a stiff upper lip, look on the bright side, or just hope mom will arrive, deus ex machina, to help you." But, he says, "Yoshitake's illustrations are so charming they obviate the need for an obvious lesson - my kids laughed throughout, though never harder than at the poor hero's bare bottom as mom bathes him. Each child is unique, but all children think butts are hilarious." So true.
To read Alam's full review of this and other great books about never giving up, visit the New York Times here.
Area mazes, or "menseki meiro" as they're called in Japan, are logic puzzles with simple rules but sometimes complex solutions. Originally developed in Japan for students to develop logical and geometric thinking skills, this collection by Japanese puzzle master Naoki Inaba and first published in English by The Experiment Publishing brings area mazes to everyone - especially lovers of sudoku and other brain games. The first ones are easy, but the area mazes get progressively more difficult.
In the first review of the English edition, boing boing's Mark Frauenfelder calls them "fun" and "addictive." You can read the whole review here, and try some of the puzzles for yourself!