Inch by Inch

Inch by Inch by Leo Lionni cover, a worm in a cluster of tall grass

Inch by Inch

Written by Leo Lionni

New York, Ivan Obelensky Inc., 1960

9.7" x 11"

Kerlan Collection, Children's Literature Research Collections

University of Minnesota Libraries

As a graphic artist and the art director of Fortune magazine, Leo Lionni was a leading figure in New York's flourishing post-World War II design scene. Like many of his contemporaries, he came to the picture book serendipitously, in his case after improvising a story to distract his grandchildren during a train ride. With no art supplies at hand, Lionni turned bits of colored paper torn from a magazine into "characters." Little Blue and Little Yellow was the first of many Lionni picture-book fables notable for their playful philosophical reflections. In Inch by Inch, a caterpillar learns the importance of using one's wits in a world of big, hungry creatures, including some too large even to fit on the page.


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