Laura Vaccaro Seeger excels in presenting creative concept books, as seen in the previously reviewed Green, Lemons Are Not Red and The Hidden Alphabet. All of her books have a quietly artistic and poetic feel, and First the Egg is no exception.
The idea behind the book is a simple one — to show the youngest readers how plants and animals transform as they grow, using a series of simple illustrations (with die-cuts for added interest) and the simplest language possible: “First the ___; then the ____”. For example, “First the egg; then the chicken”; although it isn’t reflected in the text, the illustration also shows a baby chick preceding the full-grown chicken. Other examples include tadpole/frog and caterpillar/butterfly.
While the content is quite basic, the way in which it is presented is very elegant, and I love how the last spread shows that life isn’t a linear process, but a cycle.