Word Builder

Take the following ten letters, presented in random order, and build two words to reveal how I feel about Ann Whitford Paul's book: K,I,N,D,A,S,U,C,K,Y.  Okay, go! 

*Letters combine into words, which beget sentences, and subsequently are arranged into sentences, then chapters, before finally giving rise to a book -- I guess it's good for children to learn all of this early, but it's not exactly the scintillating fare audiences of any age beg for  
*Kurt Cyrus' illustrations are big and bold, although not that inspired, and, frankly, rather boilerplate
*The yellow and black background on the inside covers pops nicely

*Oh, hey, the author repeated the same information (in a slightly different way) during the second half of the book that was found in the first half -- she'd probably argue that this helps kids understand the principles better, but I would retort that they could just reread the book if it mattered that much to them 
*There is a huge disparity in the recognizability (look, I just built a controversial word that is only in the world's third-tier dictionaries) of component letters when looking at the buildings being dropped into the "chapter cities" versus the existing structures 
*A jackhammer does something completely different than a hammer, but I'm not sure Paul and Cyrus remembered that

Here's another word for you: lackluster.  I was actively disappointed this wasn't better because I thought the link between construction and literary structure could have led to some good times.  Instead, this book is more like the Washington Gas contractors who have been digging holes into the sidewalk on our block over the last month...just sitting there, pretending to do enough to collect an inflated paycheck.  There's not a whole lot I can do about either of these situations, so I choose to focus on most anything else.

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