Popup books – feeding the kid in us

Mommy? popup with art by Maurice Sendak

MOMMY? by Michael Di Capua Books – Scholastic with art by Maurice Sendak, scenario by Arthur Yorinks, paper engineering by Matthew Reinhart

I didn’t have time, Easter Day, to read to the four visiting little ones, but that’s the good thing about family. With very few exceptions – like when they were tearing around the yard finding Easter eggs or examining the compost heap – at any given moment one kid or another was draped over a grownup’s lap absorbed in “hearing” a book.

It was a beautiful thing. And when it’s not a grand holiday with a lot of cooking and cleanup to interrupt, I do have time to read to them, and I absolutely love the fact there are so many ways to do it.

Popups don’t usually make the list of book publishing media, but I think they qualify as a category. As a couple of dozen paper engineers ply their art around the world, I’m increasingly amazed by what they produce. The Sendak book shown above (I’m pleased to say it’s from my own small collection – these books are pricey!) is one example, but the 2-D image I’ve supplied hardly begins to demonstrate the experience of thumbing through one of these hand-crafted books. But hey, we’ve got video to show us what it’s like.

Whatever you think of Game of Thrones (much to appreciate there, though I don’t count myself a fan) if you haven’t been amazed by popups in the past, here’s a trailer you’ve got to watch for the popup effect. If you enjoy popup books too, I hope you’ll tell me about your favorites.

This entry was posted in *Lois, On Books, On Publishing, On Reading, On Television by Lois Karlin. Bookmark the permalink.

About Lois Karlin

Lois Karlin writes fiction and blogs at Women of Mystery. She is the founding editor of a small publishing house, Glenmere Press. As Winged Books, she provides eBook and print-on-demand services. Lois is a professional writer who for two decades has published online documentation and web copy. She has worked as a writing instructor through the Orange County Council of Arts, published "The Understudy" in the Fresh Slices (Murder New York Style) anthology, She lives in New York’s Hudson Valley.

15 thoughts on “Popup books – feeding the kid in us

  1. Definitely a different dimension…kids are in awe of them. Just have to be sure little fingers don’t destroy all the delicate tabs, gears, and small pieces!

  2. I loved them and always gave pop-books until I realized when they’re very young there’s nothing better than to pull out the pop-up—there’s a lot of temptation going on for a kid! But they bring a story to life and fascinate and they keep their interest, so it’s worth the accident or two.

  3. The accidents hurt me more than they hurt the book. Somehow they seem more painful than the occasional rips or crayon slashes in a regular hardback, I suppose because the art/engineering combo fascinates me so much.

  4. Right, it’s pretty distractive given the scope of the presentation and really mars the book more than an earmarked page, which I can never bring myself to do. But like your old chipped favorite mugs or what have you the kids’ torn popup books just look well loved and well read, so one of my daughters said to console me.

  5. I enjoyed giving my nieces and nephew glorious pop-ups from Robert Sabuda, whose studio does some great ones. (And I do watch that trailer every time, Lois!)

  6. Thank you for the recommendation! Will check it out.Am I the only one who buys them for herself? :(sheepish grin)

  7. I love pop-up books. I have a Richard Gorey one and It’s fun. I’ve also done a few invites with pop-ups and sound for clients. They really get attention.

    • The Dracula one? Edward Gorey? I’d love to see how you make the invites for clients, is it a dye-cut print job? How do you plan the folds? The process seems complicated, to say the least!

  8. My granddaughter is too little for pop-ups, but I know I’ll buy them when she’s older. There is something magical about having the world of the book come to life by turning a page. That Sendak is gorgeous.

    • The Sendak is truly amazing. I keep them here at my house so the kids can look at them when they visit, but their parents don’t have to worry about rescuing them from ruin at home.

  9. They may be childhood-themed for the most part, but frankly I think they’re made for adults as much as for kids. Paper engineers must have a blast.

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