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How to Write a Children's Picture Book: Volume I: Structure Volume II: Word, Sentence, Scene, Story Volume III: Figures of Speech Review by Lori Hooten

Volume I: Structure
Volume II: Word, Sentence, Scene, Story
Volume III: Figures of Speech
Eve Heidi Bine-Stock

Do you enjoy children's books? I mean, really enjoy them? If so, then you may not be that different from me. I love children's books. I collect them. And I dream of one day writing a book that will brighten a child's day and enrich their learning and love of books. If that sounds something like you, this three-volume set of books by Eve Heidi Bine-Stock may be just what you are looking for.

How to Write a Children's Picture Book, by Eve Heidi Bine-Stock is a three volume set. Each volume of this set analyzes a different aspect of children's literature. Volume one looks at structure. By exploring the structure of quality stories, Bine-Stock shows how to analyze the structure of a story. Looking at such literature as The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Where The Wild Things Are, the impact of structure on each story is illustrated and diagrammed. After exploring the structure of 27 stories, there is a final chapter on planning the structure of your own story. This chapter applies the structure of a symmetrical paradigm to help you plan and then write your own book.

The second volumes is all about the word, sentence, scene, and story. This volume was an in depth look at how choices affect the course of action and resolution in stories. Bine-Stock once again uses a number of high-quality children's storybooks as solid examples to illustrate each part of the analysis. From the smallest part, the word, to the story as a whole, this volume helps you see the effect of choices on the story. (As an aside, I think this volume would be fantastic for anyone looking to improve their writing, whether for a children's book or not.)

Volume III: Figures of Speech digs into the nuances and subtle meanings of turns of phrase. Children's literature is not often thought of as containing practiced and sophisticated language. Volume III shows us that this is actually very true. Working through such literature as Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile and Corduroy, illustrations show examples of how attention to detail in figures of speech enhances a story significantly.

 On page 181 of Volume II, Bine-Stock writes “Children's picture storybooks seem simple, but reading, and writing, them is emotionally complex.” With easily accessible language and explanation, this series takes the complexity out through easy to understand example and analysis, allowing the idea of writing a children's book to become real.

—Product Review by Lori Hooten, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, January, 2016