Ita, S. (2011). The odyssey: A pop-up book. New York, NY: Sterling Publishing Company.
Take one look at Sam Ita’s The Odyssey: A Pop-Up Book, and you will know that it is no ordinary picture book. This book combines many of my favorite elements; it is a picture book, a graphic novel, and a traditional Greek classic. Each page is a feast for the eyes as the colorful artwork and comic strip panels depict the story of Homer’s classic, The Odyssey. This work was originally handed down orally; now the pages of this work of art are literally bursting with visual and textual literature. Many people do not consider pictures literature, but reading The Odyssey: A Pop-Up Book will convince you otherwise. Though the illustrations, pop-up pieces, and speech balloons are plentiful, they do not distract from the original work. Each of these modern elements combine to enrich and supplement this oral tradition that can be difficult for young readers to follow when read with text alone. I would show this book to any student because it is a work of art in every sense of the meaning. The pages of this book come alive with beautiful words and pictures that excite the reader. Another reason I would use this picture book in the classroom or with my own children is because it exposes them to many different types of literature at once. This book is one part classic, one part pop-up, and one part graphic novel; all of these elements combine to make this book an engaging and interactive experience like none other. Sam Ita’s work is one that I personally desire for the shelves of my own personal library because I have never seen anything like it. I love this work, and I would love to share it with young readers. Sam Ita’s The Odyssey: A Pop-Up Book is a unique experience for any reader, young or old.