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Pantone Color Puzzles by Pantone and AbramsAppleseed, art by Tad Carpenter

Just in case you missed my review of Pantone Colors from March of 2012, here's a little primer (double entendre intended) on Pantone, the company, that is known for "identifying, matching and communicating colors to solve the problems associated with producing accurate color matching in the graphic arts community." The PANTONE MATCHING SYSTEM is a book of standardized colors in fan-deck format that is as essential for artists as a dictionary is for writers. Pantone is also known for celebrating a "Color of the Year" that  pops up in fashion, home decor and other areas of our daily lives. 2013 color is Emerald, which I cannot replicate here. Pantone Color Puzzles is yet another brilliant book from AbramsApleseed, a publisher known for attention to detail, design and the creation of beautiful books that also instill a love of reading in babies and toddlers, continues their partnership with Pantone, this time to create Pantone Color Puzzles.

Tad Carpenter's art in Pantone Color Puzzles is a bit more detailed and expressive than Helen Dardik's style in Pantone Colors, and it lends itself well to the interactive puzzle aspect of the book. Each spread focuses on a variation of shades for one color, four for each, all with the fantastic names that Pantone assigns. One of my favorite aspects of Pantone Colors is the quality of the name given to each color and, if you are feeling really creative, you can even find an entertaining way to read this list of colors out loud. How often do you and your kids think about the implications of and differences between French Fry Yellow, Duckling Yellow and School Bus Yellow?

While there are less options for turning a list of color names into a story or song in Pantone Color Puzzles, the puzzle pages give toddlers the chance to work on their fine motor skills and strengthen their visual skills when searching for puzzle pieces, which, I might add, are not immediately noticeable on the page. Really, though, the best thing about Pantone Color Puzzles is that it just might be as engaging to the adults who have the pleasure of reading it with a toddler as it is for the toddler!

AbramsApleseed also makes a deck of color cards and a boxed set of mini-board books!

And, if you find well designed, aesthetically pleasing board books for babies as cool as I do, be sure not to miss Hippopposites by Janik Coat. Click the title for a link to my review!


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