Skip to main content

At the Same Moment Around the World by Clotilde Perrin

At the Same Moment Around the World by Clotilde Perrin is one of those special books that children will remember well into adulthood. I feel like I say this about many of the books I review here and I don't want you to think that I overuse this compliment. What you may not realize is that, as a children's bookseller, I see hundreds of new picture books published every year, and the majority of those books do not seem worth the paper they are printed on, let alone the cover price. This may sound harsh, but I think that the ability to write a good picture book is an art that few people understand or possess so my standards for what constitutes a good picture book are quite high. When an author and illustrator can create a combined work that is exciting, interesting, thought provoking and lovely to look at, that is definitely something worthy of praise and attention. And that is exactly what Perrin has done with At the Same Moment Around the World, a tall, slim book that takes readers eastward from the Greenwich meridian, from day to night, with each page portraying one of the (original) twenty four time zones. As I learned in the fascinating "About Time Zones," pages at the end of the book, right before the really cool four-panel fold out map of the world that lets you see all the children from all the time zones at the same time, when Sir Sandford Fleming, the fellow credited with the invention of time zones in 1884, he established twenty-four time zones. Now that we have switched from Greenwich Mean Time to Coordinate Universal Time (UTC - and something else new I learned here) there are about 40 time zones that allow for better measurement and synchronization of time more accurately than ever before. This in turn allows for technology like GPS to tell you where you are at any given moment! As technical as this all sounds, At the Same Moment Around the World is truly an engaging story of a day in the life of children all over the world, giving readers a glimpse into different countries and cultures, unified with the one thing we all share - as twenty-four hour day.

At the Same Moment Around the World begins at six o'clock in the morning in Dakar, Senegal, where Keita is helping his father count the fish caught during the night. A turn of the page takes us to Paris, France, where Benedict is drinking hot chocolate at seven o'clock in the morning. Sofia, Bulgaria, Baghdad, Iraq, Samarkand, Uzbekistan and Mount Everest are the next stops as we head toward lunch time. Perrin chooses out of the ordinary (for kid's books) places and people to feature in her book, which is magnificently illustrated, filled with details on every page and a color palette that changes gradually with the time of day and place on the map.

At the Same Moment Around the World travels onward through time and space, stopping in Hanoi, Vietnam where Khanh is trying to nap, to Japan, Australia, New Caledonia and a snowy Russia by dinnertime. Stops in Honolulu, Anchorage, San Francisco and Phoenix cover America quite nicely, while a visit to Lima, Peru at one o'clock in the morning finds baby Diego being born! Through the rain forests of Brazil, the chill of Greenland and back to Dakar, Senegal. The final illustration is the same as the first, but this time we see Chloe on a ship in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. It's five o'clock in the morning and she is tired from dancing all night!

At the Same Moment Around the World is such an amazing book that you should definitely get for your kids, picking up an extra copy since it also makes a memorable gift.

At the Same Moment Around the World makes a perfect companion for oversized, equally gorgeous and infinitely fun to look at MAPS by Aleksandra Mizielińska and Daniel Mizieliński.

Source: Review Copy


Popular posts from this blog

Made by Dad: 67 Blueprints for Making Cool Stuff - Projects You Can Build For (and With) Kids! by Scott Bedford

On his personal website, Scott Bedforddescribes himself as an "Award Winning Online Creative Professional" working within the advertising and design industry. What is more interesting (and applicable here) is how hisWhat I Made website came to be. While sitting in a Starbucks with his restless young sons, trying to enjoy his latte, Bedford created something out of coffee stir sticks that ended up keeping his boys entertained, finishing his coffee in peace and sparking (re-sparking, really) his creative drive and reminding him of the "enormous joy gained from making things, even simple things, and that this joy is not the complexity or quality of the finished project but in the process of making itself. On Bedford'sWhat I Made website, he even shares Six Cool Coffee Shop Crafts for Kidsthat you can try out next time you want to enjoy your coffee and your kids are making that difficult. I've shared two below - be sure to check out the website and see the rest!


How to Choose Age Appropriate Books for Advanced Readers

How to Choose Age Appropriate Books for Advanced Readers remains the most read post on my blog since I wrote it in 2012. Because of this, I have cleaned up this post, tightened the writing and added in any pertinent information that has come about since it originally ran. When I first started in August of 2008, I was scrambling for content, finding my purpose and my voice and not always doing my best writing. How to Choose Age Appropriate Books for Advanced Readers was one of the first articles I wrote and, as a bookseller and a book reviewer, and now as an elementary school librarian where I have gone from working with kids reading well beyond their grade level to kids reading well below, this philosophy remains my organizing principle and central focus when reading and recommending books to parents and children. 

In the interest of my mission and the attention this article continues to receive, I have updated and expanded this article and included a guide to using …

POP-UP: Everything You Need to Know to Create Your Own Pop-Up Book, paper engineering by Ruth Wickings, illustrations by Frances Castle RL: All ages

POP-UP:  Everything You Need to Know to Create Your Own Pop-Up Book with paper engineering by Ruth Wickings and illustrations by Frances Castle is THE COOLEST BOOK EVER!!!  I know that I haven't dedicated much time to pop-up books here, but they have always held a special place in my heart, and the phrase "paper engineering" is a favorite of mine. Although I didn't know what it was at the time, I did go through a paper engineering phase when I was ten or so. I would sneak off to the back of the classroom during independent work periods and go to town on the construction paper and glue and make these little free-standing dioramas. A huge fan of The Muppet Show (the original), I reconstructed the all-baby orchestra from an episode, drawing and coloring each baby and his/her instrument then gluing them onto a 3D orchestra section I had crafted out of brown construction paper.  I also made a 3D version of Snidely Whiplash throwing Nell off a cliff with Dudley Do-Right wa…