A bizzarre little children's book by the very bizarre little William Steig
. The book, which is rather smallish, consists of page after page of small, simple pictures
and odd little strings of letters-- things like a picture of a small child facing his dog authoritatively, subtitled
with "I M A U-M B-N"-- and literally nothing else. No expanation, no meta-signal
, no actual english anywhere in the book, no clue as to what the page after page of cryptic images
are supposed to mean. The cover had two children, one of which was pointing excitedly at a bee on a flower.
The key to this, of course, was that you were meant to read each page out loud. The title becomes "See the bee!"; the example i gave becomes "I am a Human Being". Not all of them were easy to work out, but if you said any given one of them enough times, eventually you would hear the message.
I, however, was not able to figure this out for years. The book fascinated me; here was something so simple, so blindingly obvious, and yet i couldn't understand a bit of it. The pictures couldn't be all there was to it; there had to be something deeper. There had to be some meaning. I would stand in the library and stare at the book, pondering, trying to see if some meaning would mysteriously manifest itself. (I did, i think, work out what the title was meant to be, but most of the examples within the book were not so blatant.) (Give me a break, i was six.)
The book had a sequel called CDC? (See the sea?), which i seem to remember having cooler pictures..