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The Eric Carle Museum
of Picture Book Art
  • 125 West Bay Road
  • Amherst, MA 01002


  • Thursday, Friday10 am-3 pm
  • Saturday 10am – 4 pm
  • Sunday 12 pm - 4 pm

Closed Monday,Tuesday, Wednesday

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Picture Books We Love

Review: Inside Outside


Photo of the book Inside Outside propped against a bookcase of books. The cover illustration shows child in a house with a dog looking out of the window.

Inside Outside by Lizi Boyd (Chronicle Books, 2013)

I was so inspired by the At Home Art Studio’s exploration of surprise book design elements such as die-cut pages and paper flaps, that I wanted to share one of my favorite books that uses die-cuts windows really cleverly!

A young child explores and interacts with the many offerings of both the indoors and the outdoors in this wordless book that playfully uses cut out windows and peek-through panels on each page. Alternating between home and nature scenes, readers follow the child through the seasons, from making artwork and putting on puppet shows inside, to flying a kite and planting a garden outside. There are so many humorous and thoughtful details for even the youngest reader to point out, (including spotting the repeating animals on every page) making this a wonderful book for reading over and over. The subtle connection between each page turn shows the seamless joining of the indoors and outdoors.

Image of child in kitchen hanging up child artwork of snowman while standing on a stool. A dog drinks from a watering can full of water. Three die-cut windows show signs of spring.

Image shows child outside splashing in puddles while holding an umbrella. A dog barks and the die-cut windows from the previous page spread now highlight the snowman artwork in the kitchen.

The watering can the dog is drinking out of in the kitchen hints at splashing in the puddles in the yard on the next page. The wood and tools out on the lawn show what later becomes a flower box inside. A beautiful look at the interconnectedness of our indoor and outdoor worlds (as well as an inspiring glimpse at a child who keeps so busy!), this book is especially helpful as we spend extra time indoors and exploring our own yards. What will you explore?


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