What are picture books?

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Picture books are regarded as texts in which words and pictures co-exist and where imagery becomes vital to the meaning. Picture books are made up of a complex relationships between two sets of signs, iconic and conventional, sharing the function of describing representing and narrating, where iconic signs are representational and conventional signs rely on a shared knowledge of the code . The intersemiotic relationship between text and image is such that in many cases there would not be a book without the images. This is especially so of Shaun Tan’s The Lost thing and The Arrival, David Weisner’s The Three Pigs or the work of Anthony Browne, whose Voices in the Park has become a standard for exploring voice, character and the metafictive.

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