The Spots and the Dots by Helen Baugh and Marion Deuchars is the picture book I have been the MOST excited about this year and it is one of my Top Picks for 2020! I truly wish every child, school and library could own a copy of this incredible book.
The Spots and the Dots can be read front-to-back (from the point of view of the Spots) or back-to-front (from the point of view of the Dots).
It was fascinating reading this book with my daughter. Both stories are exactly the same. The Spots live on one side of the hill. The Dots live on the other. Both the Spots and the Dots have grown up fearing each other to be “bad through and through”. Seeing their prejudices so starkly compared is incredibly powerful and thought-provoking.
I especially loved how it is the littlest Spot and Dot, who end up at the top of the hill, face to face, who recognise that their beliefs were wrong and in fact find friendship.
Marion’s bold art style and limited colour palette is genius! Helen’s rhyming story bounces along and is just the right length – so you don’t mind reading the same story twice, back to back! The stories meet in the middle spread which is simply stunning and a perfect ending – or perhaps it is the perfect new beginning!
This has been my daughter’s first request for a bedtime read every night since we got it. The Spots and the Dots will delight children but also challenge them to think about what is really going on, on both sides of the hill. In today’s society, I can’t think of a more relevant and much-needed book to share with our children.
If you are only going to buy one book this year, choose The Spots and the Dots! (Added bonus: It is two stories for the price of one!)
Publisher: Andersen Press
Publication date: 1 October 2020
I am very grateful to the publisher for providing me with a complimentary copy of this book. This voluntary review contains my honest opinion.