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The Typewriter

3.93  ·  Rating details ·  504 ratings  ·  129 reviews
Using just nine words, the award-winning creator of Chalk takes readers on another unforgettable journey. When three children discover a typewriter on a carousel, they are transported on an adventure of their own creation—complete with a giant beach ball and a threatening crab. Stunning, richly colored artwork is paired with limited text so children can tell their own ...more
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published March 8th 2016 by Two Lions (first published February 23rd 2016)
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Average rating 3.93  · 
Rating details
 ·  504 ratings  ·  129 reviews

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Aug 26, 2016 rated it liked it
The girl, bright and bold, is by far my favorite character. I want to read a chapter book about her now! I also appreciate that these kids are not on too short a leash, like so many over-protected children nowadays.
Gretchen Taylor
Sep 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
My son came home from school chatting nonstop about this one, so I had to buy it. Another fab-for-all-ages wordless book!
Karen Gibson
Although I put this on my Wordless shelf, there are actually 9 words in this very creative book. I think children would love creating their own stories, either by telling them or by writing them.
Nancy Kotkin
Story: 3 stars
Illustrations: 4 stars

Three friends discover an old-fashioned typewriter perched on a merry-go-round seat that resembles a bee. When they type the word "Beach," they are magically transported to a beach, where they have an adventure. When they type "The End," they magically return to their snowy hometown.

It's not clear to me how three modern-day children know how to use a typewriter, or even know what one is. This almost-wordless picture book doesn't have the same magic as Fossil.
Cassandra Gelvin
Feb 14, 2018 rated it liked it
"Oh my god, a typewriter! I've never seen one of those before! This is the best day of my life!"

It starts kind of abruptly. There's no title page; on the first page there's just three rows, comic-style, of things that are happening: kids come up on bicycles, see a carousel and see that it's closed, and then this full-page-width strip of the girl's eyes just being amazed. It took me a while to figure out whether that was actually the first page or if it was like a preview of what I was about to
Vernon Area Public Library KIDS
May 06, 2016 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: K-3
On a chilly winter's day, three friends take a bike ride and follow a butterfly to the beach to discover a merry-go-round that's closed for the season. But wait, what's that box on top of the ride-on bumble bee seat? It's a old-fashioned typewriter with a piece of paper attached. First, the kids type "beach" and magically the frozen water melts away into a summer beach! Follow the kids on a fantastical story without words to find out what happens next. Thompson's realistic illustrations capture ...more
Mar 06, 2016 added it
Shelves: children-s-books
This book is very innovative in the way it shares story. Readers will zoom into and out of the scenes on each page and will be pulled right into the book. My son has read this book several times, and I love how he carefully and slowly examines all of the illustrations on the pages. When he gets a bit older, I plan to ask him to tell his own story that connects the illustrations. We can change the story just a bit each night. Thomson creates the story to be interpretive for readers, and I can't ...more
Jason Cantrell
Mar 05, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-book
I received a free copy of this book for a Goodreads giveaway.

This book is basically a series of well-illustrated paintings that told a short story without words. The artistic style is extremely well done, and the story was sort of cute, though ultimately not memorable. I wouldn't have paid the cover price for this book to flip through about thirty pages of pretty pictures.

There might be more appeal to kids who can look through it and create their own version of the story in their own words. But
It was time to introduce my old typewriter to my granddaughter when we read this book together. We even practiced writing a few words, and wondered what would happen if we typed "dinosaur" or "wind". In the book, three children find an interesting carousel with a bee carrying a box, and in it--a typewriter. Only nine words are typed, but they take these kids on quite an adventure, including escaping a giant crab. Magical and colorful illustrations fill the pages. Of course we had to read it more ...more
Mar 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing
So adorable! Received from GoodReads, and I'm so glad I did! This book is so good for sparking kids' imaginations! What if?! Great conversation starter -- would be fun as a writing prompt for my upper elementary kids.
Oct 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
I was delighted to see that these are the same three kids from Chalk having excellent adventures with a typewriter that they find sitting on top of a merry-go-round. This is some absolutely stunning artwork. The kids come alive on the page.
Paula Hollohan
Mar 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Love this book for an elementary (K-4) classroom. You need to read facial expressions, take in the whole illustration to understand the story. I think it will create curiosity and wonder in a classroom. What word would you spell out on this typewriter?
In this nearly wordless picture book, a group of kids happen upon a typewriter on a carousel and suddenly the words they type become their reality. For readers who enjoyed CHALK and FOSSIL, THE TYPEWRITER is classic Bill Thomson.
Mar 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
I loved this visually-stunning and imaginative book. The only reason it doesn't get the 5th star is because the premise is a variation of his previous (fantastic) book, Chalk. Beautifully done once again.
Feb 24, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: z2016-reads
Nicely done. Would be great intro to good classroom activity.
Mar 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Three kids find a typewriter and discover that the words they type come to life. Imaginative and stunning pictures. It would be fun to have a building program based loosely off this idea.
Karen Arendt
Mar 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: wordless
I love the illustrations, so bold and vivid. The story line allows for one's imagination to soar and share the power of a word.
Another (almost) wordless gem from Bill Thomson! Kids will have fun imagining what words they would type.
Mar 04, 2016 rated it really liked it
The illustrations are gorgeous and dynamic.
Claire Dyer
Mar 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Genre: The Typewriter by Bill Thomson is a Fantasy Fiction wordless book. The Typewriter is a make-believe book that includes elements that are impossible in real life, for example, the children come across a typewriter and discover that whatever they type on the typewriter magically appears. The children go on an adventure taking turns typing different words which appear in their make-believe world such as a beach ball, ice cream, and a giant crab.

Target Audience : This book would be suited
Dec 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: author-study
After discovering a peculiar box on top of a carousel, three friends discover that inside of the box isn't just an old typewriter - but a magical one. After typing different words onto a blank piece of paper, the three friends soon learn that each word they type not only comes to life - but comes to life bigger than they could imagine! After the last of the three type in a word that terrifies them, it is up to them to think of one last word that could possibly save them from the gigantic ...more
Adrianna Laskowski
Mar 05, 2018 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jim Erekson
The best thing about this book is Thomson's cinematic skills in framing. He uses angles and the full-bleed spread masterfully, exploiting camera angles, borders, and off-screen imagination to create tension. His understanding of dynamic angles for creating excitement and right angles for resolution was clear. And the hyper-realism of his paintings shows incredible skill as a draftsman. Acrylic paint dries rather fast, so unless he was using some kind of slowing agent, his transparent color work ...more
Pamela Hatch
Three friends are riding their bikes in winter and come upon a carousel in the middle of nowhere. They find a strange carrying case on the back of the large bumblebee and inside is an old fashioned spelling bee typewriter. That is when the true adventure begins. Hesitantly, the girl types a word "beach" and then suddenly the snowy landscape is gone replaced by sand, and sea, and sun. Then one of the boys adds a word which also comes true - but choose your words carefully.....

The story is
Molly Lund
Jul 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
The illustrations in this book are so incredibly realistic and rich in details that you will find yourself reading the book over and over again. There are secrets to discover on each page as you search for the connecting theme. Go back, look again, you probably did miss a piece of the unfolding puzzle. In the beginning, it is winter and three young people have ridden their bikes to an amusement park, complete with a merry-go-round. The sign says, “Sorry, WE’RE CLOSED”, yet the children observe ...more
Jan 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
I love wordless books; (well, nine words; can we still call this "wordless? I'll go with yes.)

And many wordless books can be a bit confusing but this is a REALLY awesome intro to wordless books. It could also tie into an intro with computers by explaining what a typewriter is!

This is a darling book. Yay wordless picture book FUN!
Jan 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-s-books
I usually don't have much to say about children's books, and I'm not a particular fan of picture books however I really like this book. The pictures were gorgeously illustrated and told an obvious story about the power of words and imagination. My two-year-old and I really enjoyed this book and it would be a great book to use in the classroom to teach facial expressions and making inferences.
The only words are the ones the children type on the typewriter they find. This book reminds me of the books by David Wiesner, especially "Flotsam". Great illustrations done in acrylic paint and colored pencils, they are so realistic. Also reminds me of Kadir Nelson's work.
Lauren S
Oct 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I love Bill Thomson's wordless picture books but this one is by far my favorite. I love the illustrations and how the butterfly is present in this book too! My favorite part is the one where the characters type "ice cream"!
Bookworm's Nemesis
Jan 09, 2019 rated it liked it
3.5 stars
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Wordless picture books 1 1 Mar 09, 2016 02:21PM  

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Bill Thomson lives in Southington, Connecticut with his wife, Diann, and their three sons, Billy, Nik, and Ethan. Bill has illustrated Karate Hour, Building With Dad, Baseball Hour, and Soccer Hour, all written by Carol Nevius. Bill's also created the wordless books, CHALK, FOSSIL, and THE TYPEWRITER. Bill is a Professor of Illustration at the Hartford Art School at the University of Hartford.

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