If you grew up with the marvelous, magical books of Richard Scary, then Brian Biggs's Tinyville Town Gets to Work will feel familiar to you. And, while you may wonder why we need even the slightest reworking of Scarry's richly detailed books, let me remind you that, during my own, slightly less than half a century lifetime, Scarry's books have been edited and adapted to our changing social norms. Biggs got his version of Cars and Trucks and Things that Go out of the way with his Everything Goes trilogy. With Tinyville, Biggs continues to give kids a look at the working world of adults and all the different jobs there are.
What Biggs does with his Tinyville books is put minorities like people of color and women into the work place while also giving readers a look at more meticulous aspects of the work. These books are important because, if children can see it, they can imagine it. Children's books are mirrors, windows and doors. They allow children to see themselves, in all their varieties, to look into the lives of other people and learn, and, finally, to walk into other worlds. With Tinyville, Biggs makes this possible for all readers. In I'm a Librarian, Biggs breaks down this multifaceted job for young readers. Kevin the librarian starts his day early, in bed next to his partner. He tells readers that he is, "good at answering questions." Kevin likes to, "help people get the information they need." He scours the library to help young Owen find a book on elephants. At the end of the day, he returns the books to their shelves, even checking one out for himself. The book ends where it began, with Kevin in bed next to his partner, this time, glasses on and reading by night light. Working with the public is a big part of a librarian's day and, as you can imagine, I'm a Librarian, like all of Biggs's books, is packed with people of all colors with a balanced representation. From an adult perspective, the Tinyville Town books might seem mundane, but kids love to look at these every day scenarios and Biggs's brings the diversity that is needed and valued to the very entertaining page in this series.
Source: Review Copy