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Wave: (Books about Ocean Waves, Beach Story Children's Books)

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In this evocative wordless book, internationally acclaimed artist Suzy Lee tells the story of a little girl's day at the beach. New York Times Best Illustrated Children's Book 2008


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In this evocative wordless book, internationally acclaimed artist Suzy Lee tells the story of a little girl's day at the beach. New York Times Best Illustrated Children's Book 2008

30 review for Wave: (Books about Ocean Waves, Beach Story Children's Books)

  1. 4 out of 5

    Hilary

    This wonderful picture book with no text shows us a little girl going to the beach for the day with her mother. The little girl drawn on one side in black and white the sea on the other side in blue and gradually they meet. The book captures the feel of how fun it is to be by the sea as a child.

  2. 5 out of 5

    David Schaafsma

    Well, I read recently Lee's Mirror and had read other work by her, so I saw that by far the most read and liked book of hers on Goodreads is Wave. It doesn't have the emotional complexity of Mirror and it's just "up," more than anything else, but it's not sappy or simplistic, either. The art is great, with lots of space for reflection and contemplation, pencils and watercolors. It's a wordless or silent story about a girl who creates a playful relationship with a wave, a friendship. I liked it a Well, I read recently Lee's Mirror and had read other work by her, so I saw that by far the most read and liked book of hers on Goodreads is Wave. It doesn't have the emotional complexity of Mirror and it's just "up," more than anything else, but it's not sappy or simplistic, either. The art is great, with lots of space for reflection and contemplation, pencils and watercolors. It's a wordless or silent story about a girl who creates a playful relationship with a wave, a friendship. I liked it a lot. Check out her work and in just a few minutes it could change the way you relate to your environment, to nature, to yourself.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Manybooks

    The adorable (and of course wordless) antics of a little girl encountering waves on the beach are evocative, sweetly humouros, although I do kind of wish that the mother had been rather more visible in the background and that the little girl had worn a life jacket or personal floatation device. And while this small lack does not really take all that much from my aesthetic enjoyment of Suzy Lee's Wave, the fact remains that the sea can be dangerous and unpredictable, and proper safety precautions The adorable (and of course wordless) antics of a little girl encountering waves on the beach are evocative, sweetly humouros, although I do kind of wish that the mother had been rather more visible in the background and that the little girl had worn a life jacket or personal floatation device. And while this small lack does not really take all that much from my aesthetic enjoyment of Suzy Lee's Wave, the fact remains that the sea can be dangerous and unpredictable, and proper safety precautions and supervision are indeed both important and necessary (and yes indeed, the more I think about this, the more it does personally somewhat bother me that the little girl is not wearing a life preserver of some kind and that the mother is not more visibly present). Furthermore and delightfully, as a college and university level German language instructor, I am always looking for intersting new teaching materials, and I believe that Wave could be an excellent (and fun) book to use for independent story telling, or even simple grammar exercises in beginning level language classes. I could well imagine using prepared photocopies of some of the scenes depicted for basic language activities (such as counting the number of sand dunes, the number of seagulls), and especially for verb drills (and since especially in German, verb conjugations should/must be practiced, I am always on the lookout for potential activities that might make this task less potentially monotonous, and pictures always help to lighten the mood and make reciting conjugations less of a pain and chore).

  4. 5 out of 5

    Jan Philipzig

    Wordless meditation on childhood and its relationship to nature - poetic and wonderful (if all too brief).

  5. 4 out of 5

    Kathryn

    Charming wordless picture book that tells the story of a young girl's encounter with the waves—from her initial timidity at the new experience, to brash taunting that the wave won't get her, to humble-pie-ing when it *does*--discovering treasures that it washes ashore. In the end, she has found a new friend in the sea and "waves" a fond farewell.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Agnė

    Wave is a simple, playful, and charming wordless picturebook in which the gutter plays a crucial part in the story:

  7. 5 out of 5

    Lisa Vegan

    Oh, I just loved this book. It’s brilliant in every way. I was completely charmed. It’s the wordless story of a young girl who goes to the beach with her mother/a female adult, and it’s about her, some birds, some beach finds, and some waves/the ocean. Any young child or any person who took at least one beach trip as a child will perfectly understand the events. Recently, some Goodreads’ members and I were talking about the book Karen and I remember one line from that book, paraphrased here, that: Oh, I just loved this book. It’s brilliant in every way. I was completely charmed. It’s the wordless story of a young girl who goes to the beach with her mother/a female adult, and it’s about her, some birds, some beach finds, and some waves/the ocean. Any young child or any person who took at least one beach trip as a child will perfectly understand the events. Recently, some Goodreads’ members and I were talking about the book Karen and I remember one line from that book, paraphrased here, that: many things in life make way for a three year old boy, but the ocean isn’t one of them. For some reason I thought of that as I read this. I took many trips to the beach with my father on Saturday mornings, particularly the year I was four, and I’ve spent a lot of time since playing with waves on beaches. The illustrations are outstanding, done in blue & white & black & grays/tans. The layout and shape of the book is even perfect; it’s done in widescreen-like format. The youngest child will be able to “read’ the story. The expressions on the girl’s face and her general expressiveness, and that of the flock of birds, is also wonderful. The creator of this book has her BFA in painting and her MA in book arts (which I didn’t even know existed), and it shows! I read this on a rainy, gloomy winter day, cold for San Francisco, although not typically cold winter weather, and my mood is not the best, but this book totally cheered me up. What a fun read! I had this home from the library and was going to read it anyway, but almost immediately before I read it, I noticed it has been selected as one of the January books for the Picture Books Club at the Children's Books group. The theme for January is wordless picture books. I’ve loved so many of those and this one gets added to that list.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Crystal Marcos

    A delightful wordless picture book brought to my attention by the Children’s Picture Book Club monthly discussions found here http://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/4... It is about a little girl at the beach and her interactions with a wave and some friendly seagulls. Fun illustrations with simple color choices, blue, white, and black make this book worth the read. One thing that was a bit perplexing and slightly annoying was in some of the illustrations the poor little girl lost a limb because of A delightful wordless picture book brought to my attention by the Children’s Picture Book Club monthly discussions found here http://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/4... It is about a little girl at the beach and her interactions with a wave and some friendly seagulls. Fun illustrations with simple color choices, blue, white, and black make this book worth the read. One thing that was a bit perplexing and slightly annoying was in some of the illustrations the poor little girl lost a limb because of the page layout of the book. This would have been rated a four star otherwise. My daughter and I enjoyed reading this one together, it helped that we visited Hawaii in Sept of this year. I think it reminded us both of her first encounters with the ocean.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Dov Zeller

    Wow. This is a beautiful, wordless picture book which tells the story of a shifting relationship between a kid and some ocean waves. There's a lot of humor, and allegorical undercurrents. It's working on a lot of levels at once, and the art is great.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Noran Miss Pumkin

    beautiful-one of the best kid's artsy books i have fallen in love with this year. simple and lovely story of a girl and the ocean waves--made wish for San Fran again--we stay on the ocean side every time.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Jon(athan) Nakapalau

    Pulses with the child like wonderment in discovery...brought back log forgotten memories of the beach for me.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Hayley Miller

    Suzy Lee's 'Wave' is a beautifully illustrated wordless picture-book. The story is about a girl visiting the sea side and each full bleed double spread visualises the small girl's emotions about the sea; from feeling anxious and inquisitive to playful and scared. The use of the gutter in the full bleed double pages play an important part in the story telling. At the start of the book, the small girl stays on the left while the sea stays on the right. The gutter acts as a barrier between them, wi Suzy Lee's 'Wave' is a beautifully illustrated wordless picture-book. The story is about a girl visiting the sea side and each full bleed double spread visualises the small girl's emotions about the sea; from feeling anxious and inquisitive to playful and scared. The use of the gutter in the full bleed double pages play an important part in the story telling. At the start of the book, the small girl stays on the left while the sea stays on the right. The gutter acts as a barrier between them, with the feeling of safety being available on the left and a feeling of unknown on the right. However, once the little girl becomes brave enough she crosses through the gutter of the book to the right hand side of the page and is playing in the water. On pages 9/10 the sea rises above the small girl's head showing power and authority and we can see that the small girl runs back over to the left hand side on the page back to safety. The gutter has been used cleverly as a storytelling tool without the need for text to clarify its meaning. A prominent part of this picture-book, that I found especially endearing, was the use of colour. At the beginning of the book, only the sea has any colour (blue) while everything else is monochrome; including the small girl and the seagulls that appear with her on each page. I believe that this shows the sea having more power than the small girl and it also keeps the small girl and the sea as separate entities with nothing in common. However, throughout the book more of the blue colour is added to the pages such as the sky, the small girl's dress and even the gift of seashells that the sea provided are blue in colour. As each page goes on, more of the sea-blue colour is added to the small girl's left hand side of the book, indicating that she perhaps is no longer afraid of the sea and perhaps there is some relationship forming between the sea and the small girl. The use of colour to show that they share a bond is very endearing. On the last page of the book, the sea has spread across from the right, through the gutter and onto the left hand side of the page; sharing the space with the small girl. I believe this last page shows that the girl is no longer afraid of the sea and shows that they can share the same space and have formed a friendship, indicated by the crossing over of the sea onto the same page and shared colour scheme. I think this book would be good for children that may be afraid of water /sea and also shows that although something may appear to be scary it can be overcome. Also, it shows that when sharing with something/someone that may be entirely different to you, some commonalities can be found and celebrated.

  13. 4 out of 5

    J & J

    I love wordless picture books. This one is cute :)

  14. 5 out of 5

    Cynthia

    My 9 yr old daughter brought this home from the school library. It has no words, only simple, beautiful drawings of a girl on the shore and of course, waves. You can make up your own story. My daugher and I have shared "reading" this together and it starts discussions about our times at the beach. Just a lovely, simple delight.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Cindy Dobrez

    This wordless picture book is fabulous, with one exception. The edition I got from the library loses important parts of the illustrations in the gutter! ARGH. It's too nice of a book for that to happen!

  16. 5 out of 5

    Karen

    Love, Love, Love, this book! No words, you make up the story from the pictures. Reminded me of spending time with my kids at the beach and chasing the waves. Looking forward to reading other books by Suzy Lee.

  17. 5 out of 5

    ABC

    This book shows a little girl at the beach. It does look an awfully lot like the sea between Korea and Japan. My son remembered when I lost my sandal in the waves there.

  18. 5 out of 5

    BrookesEducationLibrary

    This is a stunning picture book which wordlessly tells the story of a little girl's trip to the beach and the hypnotic waves that she evades, crashes against and jumps into.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Theresa

    1. Wave won the New York Times's Best Illustrated Book Award in 2008 and the Golden Medal from the Society of Illustrators. 2. This book would most likely be for kindergartners through third graders. 3. A girl goes to the beach but is afraid of the water. As her courage grows, she gets closer and closer to the water. As a huge wave heads her way, she runs away from the wave, but it splashes all over her. As she gets up, she is surrounded by shells, starfishes, and other riches of the waters. 4. Eve 1. Wave won the New York Times's Best Illustrated Book Award in 2008 and the Golden Medal from the Society of Illustrators. 2. This book would most likely be for kindergartners through third graders. 3. A girl goes to the beach but is afraid of the water. As her courage grows, she gets closer and closer to the water. As a huge wave heads her way, she runs away from the wave, but it splashes all over her. As she gets up, she is surrounded by shells, starfishes, and other riches of the waters. 4. Even though this book has about three colors, it has a lot more expressions to it. I love the fact that the facial expressions and her body language tells us exactly how she is feeling. I can relate to the girl because that was me when I was little. I didn't like the water but ended up loving the beach. We know the feeling of disliking something and changing the way we feel about it. 5. a) One possible in-class use would be setting the classroom as a beach to know what the girl felt like on the beach. This is a great way for the children to make connections since there are no words and to promote creativity and imagination. b) Another use for this book is for the children to draw a picture of a beach looks like to them. It allows them to try to remember the details and setting of the book. For example: the birds, shells, sand, and waves. c) This may be for students who are a bit older like second graders and up but another use can be to have the children make their own wordless book. This allows them to think about all the expressions one person can have and how it would be shown and the concepts of a wordless book.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Dolly

    This is a wonderful wordless book about a little girl playing at the ocean. It was fun for us to "read" this book together, and reminisce about our years living in Hawaii. Our girls were quite adamant that her mommy must've been close by, since she could've been pulled out to sea by the big wave and the undertow. They also pointed out that, "you should never turn your back to the ocean," an important lesson we have taught them. The illustrations were simple, with only shades of black, white, gra This is a wonderful wordless book about a little girl playing at the ocean. It was fun for us to "read" this book together, and reminisce about our years living in Hawaii. Our girls were quite adamant that her mommy must've been close by, since she could've been pulled out to sea by the big wave and the undertow. They also pointed out that, "you should never turn your back to the ocean," an important lesson we have taught them. The illustrations were simple, with only shades of black, white, gray and blue, featuring blunt charcoal drawings that capture the youth and innocence of the little girl. It's a great example of a wordless book and we really enjoyed looking at all the pictures and narrating the story to each other. Thanks to the Children's Books Picture-Book Club for selecting this as one of the wordless pictures books discussed in January.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Genie

    As a teacher: This wordless book uses 4 elements of design that provides the reader with a wonderful imagination/meaningful connections of a day at the beach. Suzy Lee uses charcoal as a medium to illustrate the mesmerizing wave that the little girl of the story interacts with. Lee uses curved and straight lines to show off the wave's movements as it builds up in the ocean or as it crashes onto the shore. The author also uses rolling "shapes" of the wave to allow for interpretation of the fluidit As a teacher: This wordless book uses 4 elements of design that provides the reader with a wonderful imagination/meaningful connections of a day at the beach. Suzy Lee uses charcoal as a medium to illustrate the mesmerizing wave that the little girl of the story interacts with. Lee uses curved and straight lines to show off the wave's movements as it builds up in the ocean or as it crashes onto the shore. The author also uses rolling "shapes" of the wave to allow for interpretation of the fluidity of the ocean. Lee also uses a splash of color, purposefully blue, for the water, while other elements of the story are in charcoal gray, illustrating the defined focus and movement of the wave. Lee also uses the white space as a means to providing the time of day throughout the story. This text is a wonderful way to allow students to not only interpret the day at the beach for the little girl, but can be used to allow students to create their own text boxes with each illustration.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Jenne

    One of the nice things about cataloging for a library is you get to see all the different books other people ordered. Every so often will catch my eye and I have to stop and look at it. Now I must admit this happens most with children's books and the ones with gorgeous pictures of food. :)Anyway, this was one of the books that came across my desk, and I couldn't resist flipping through it. I have always enjoyed wordless books and this one was no exception. I love the simple black and white line One of the nice things about cataloging for a library is you get to see all the different books other people ordered. Every so often will catch my eye and I have to stop and look at it. Now I must admit this happens most with children's books and the ones with gorgeous pictures of food. :)Anyway, this was one of the books that came across my desk, and I couldn't resist flipping through it. I have always enjoyed wordless books and this one was no exception. I love the simple black and white line drawings with the blue sea as the only colour in the book. So cleanly set out with each two page spread showing the picture - the girl and the seagulls on the beach on one side and the sea and its waves on the other. This was a delightful book, one I hope to "read" again one day with my children.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Quynh

    I read this book during the time of AFCC festival in Singapore. After her presentation about the trilogy: Wave, Mirror and The shadow, all of her books were out of stock. The border between the reality and the imagination is the main theme of all of her books. It has been such a long time I did not read a book that can inspire me as much as this one.

  24. 4 out of 5

    oliviasbooks

    Simple and beautiful - only black coal and blue watercolor - without words, but with plenty expression and room for inventing dialogue: A little, cheeky girl and a flock of seagulls confront a wave at the sea shore. Who'll have the last word?

  25. 5 out of 5

    Randie D. Camp, M.S.

    AMAZING! A beautifully illustrated account of a little girl's interactions with a big blue wave. Perhaps, the most splendidly simple, yet brilliant wordless picture book I've read.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Jos M

    Lovely watercolour images of a little girl playing on the beach, no text. Fantastic sense of playfulness and fun without dipping into the saccharine, as well as a lovely sense of safety when her mother comes to collect her. There is a very strong sense of the self-contained intensity of how toddlers play. I read for my Storytime, with the emphasis on onomatopoeia and gull sounds. The parents engaged with it very well, and some of the kids more than others. A lovely book.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Holly Payne

    A wordless book that explores a little girl and her interactions with a wave. At first the girl and the wave are always on separate pages but as time goes on the wave and girl crosses the border of the page divide. This shows all the different emotions the girl is feeling as she develops a friendship with the wave.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Cat

    Beautiful and humorous summer beach book! It's a wordless picture book to linger over. Kids and adults will enjoy it.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Melissa Kearney

    Title: Wave Author: Suzy Lee Genre: Wordless picture book Theme(s): beach, ocean, playful games, nature’s power, innocence Opening line/sentence No words in a wordless picture book ☺ Brief Book Summary: In this wordless picture book, Lee tells the story of a little girl’s day at the beach. She playfully fools with and taunts the waves at the beach while seagulls watch her from behind. Professional Recommendation/Review #1: Kirkus (Kirkus Reviews, May 1, 2008 (Vol. 76, No. 9)) Five gulls and a little Title: Wave Author: Suzy Lee Genre: Wordless picture book Theme(s): beach, ocean, playful games, nature’s power, innocence Opening line/sentence No words in a wordless picture book ☺ Brief Book Summary: In this wordless picture book, Lee tells the story of a little girl’s day at the beach. She playfully fools with and taunts the waves at the beach while seagulls watch her from behind. Professional Recommendation/Review #1: Kirkus (Kirkus Reviews, May 1, 2008 (Vol. 76, No. 9)) Five gulls and a little girl play with the tide in this beach adventure that lacks text but provides plot aplenty. Nineteen beautiful blue-and-gray 24" x 7" acrylic-and-charcoal illustrations tell the story sublimely. A line of birds follows the barefoot girl to the edge of the shore, and the gently rolling tide chases all six of them several feet up the beach. A dance begins; forward, back. The composition uses the gutter to great effect, placing the gray-sketched girl and gulls on the left-hand page while the liquid blue ocean laps ever closer on the right. The girl splashes and plays in the shallow waters, birds swirling in the sky above her. Then a huge wave rears up and tumbles over her. For a minute, she's stunned, then awestruck and excited to find the beach littered with beautiful shells that weren't there before, blue ocean saturating gray land. Gulls in the sky react happily as well, wheeling against the now-azure sky. When mother comes to fetch her, the girl gives the ocean a secret wave goodbye. Simply spectacular. Professional Recommendation/Review #2: Publishers Weekly (Publishers Weekly) Lee's (The Zoo) wordless two-color picture book will charm even readers who have never seen the postwar classics her work explicitly recalls. In it, a mostly solitary girl, conjured with a few broad charcoal strokes, encounters the ocean, all watery splashes and splatters of blue. Lee's spreads of the beach are drawn and painted in black, white and gray on matte pages; the waves are sloshed on with aqua. Dueling textures—dry charcoal, wet paint strokes—mirror the silent conversation between the girl and the waves. The girl, hanging back at first, grows bolder, taunts an enormous wave, disappears under a burst of salt water, emerges drenched, and discovers the gifts the wave leaves behind. Her stick-straight hair beguiles; her expressions morph from suspicion to resolve to joy. The ocean is alive, too, with its own range of feelings; tranquil ripples, flamenco-like explosions of spray, spatters of foam. The book's oblong shape gives Lee a dramatic expanse of beach to work with, almost like a stage; five seagulls form a Greek chorus, advancing and retreating together with the girl. A book whose rewards multiply with rereading. Response to Two Professional Reviews: Both reviewers applaud this wordless picture book for its illustrations and action-filled plot, even without words. Both reviewers mention how the color contrasts of the girl being gray and the wave being blue represent the ongoing conversation and playful battle between the wave and the girl. I think without the color contrasts, the story would not have the same effect and there wouldn’t be a feeling of a friendly interaction between the way and the girl. The second reviewer refers to the seagulls as a “Greek chorus,” however, I think that the seagulls act as the girl’s protect because they are in the air behind her when the wave is “talking back,” but the seagulls then stand on the ground behind her when she “talks” to the wave. Evaluation of Literary Elements: The shape of this book is unique and is done in widescreen-like format, which gives the reader a different feel; there are “longer” illustrations going left to right but “shorter” illustrations going up and down. Initially, the little girl was shy and timid towards the wave, however, her character changes and she starts using body language and facial expressions to boldly argue with the wave (at one point she even sticks her tongue out at the wave!). Lee uses the color blue for the water while the other elements of the story are done in gray, which puts focus onto how the wave is moving and “going after” the little girl. Lee also uses the white space to represent the time of day throughout the story. Consideration of Instructional Application: I think this book could be “read” aloud starting from kindergarten because most students can follow the simple storyline and make their own interpretations. However, if I were to focus on second or third grade, I would read this book aloud to the students and have my students individually write about what they think is happening in the story. Then, I would want to have the students share aloud their stories of what they think is happening. It will be surprising to see how many different interpretations there are about the same illustrations!

  30. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    It was fun to write but it wasn’t really entertaining that much. For me, I prefer novels more than any type of book. But I liked how it helps boost confidence even if a little

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