David Borgenicht. Star Trek Book of Opposites. Philadelphia: Quirk Books, 2011.
The are a plethora of “opposites” books out there, and it seems like most children’s books franchises put out at least one. It’s a way of illustrating sometimes-abstract concepts to your very small children using familiar characters and shapes.
If your household is anything like mine, the cast of Star Trek is quite familiar to your children. At three-and-a-half, Prima has at least a rudimentary understanding of what a “red shirt” is. So I put this book on my wishlist and, when I received it as a holiday gift, let both the kids play with it.
Secunda mostly grabbed the sturdy cardboard book and drooled on it (there’s a reason why it’s sturdy cardboard, after all), while Prima had fun sounding out the letters and trying to form them into words. So I can say that both infants and toddlers can get something out of this one.
It’s a simple book. There are twelve sets of opposites (hot/cold; near/far) illustrated by appropriate scenes from the classic Star Trek series. The remastered Constitution class classic (no A, B, C, or D) graces the cover, and if you’re my age and remember watching the show as a child yourself the vivid primary colors and familiar old crew will bring back memories.
Some fun aspects of the show make appearances: android Ruk (Big) and Balok (Little) are paired up, and we get the Gorn, the salt vampire, and, yes, tribbles. There’s a question of taste in including shots from “Plato’s Stepchildren” (mostly because it brings back unpleasant memories of watching “Plato’s Stepchildren), but at least there’s nothing from “The Alternative Factor.” And there are lots of great images of the crew, including a classic Kirk freakout shot. What’s not to love?
The Star Trek Book of Opposites is a fun, sturdy board book. If you like Trek, you should definitely have this in your little one’s library.