Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Boy and the Moon

Carroll, James Christopher. 2010. The Boy and the Moon. Ann Arbor, MI: Sleeping Bear Press.

In simple black text, on a stark white page, we learn that
It was midnight
when a small boy, with his dog and  teddy bear, opened the door to reveal a glimpse of a van Gogh-inspired evening sky.

With a crescent moon high in the sky, the boy and dog, along with an owl, a rabbit, a frog, a chicken and a flower, cavort beneath an apple tree under a magical sky. When the moon becomes stuck in the apple tree, it is the brave young boy who devises a rescue plan.

The narrative is simple, yet compelling,
They howled at the moon, they howled at life, and they howled with all the things in the night. But that night was dusky dark and the moon got stuck in a tree.
and infuses the reader with the power of possibility,
Then the boy had a thought, a delicious thought, a bright, ripe, red thought.
The painted illustrations, full page and double-spreads, are a mix of magic and realism.  The texture of the boy's thermal pajamas is visible, while at the same time, we can view the swirling evening sky through the soles of his bare feet. The moon's life-like craters receive the same attention to detail as her many expressions. All are painted in the the dusky blue palette of a midnight sky.

Sure to be a bedtime favorite, The Boy and the Moon is a magical adventure. Highly recommended.

The Boy and the Moon is author/illustrator James Christopher Carroll's first children's book.  I look forward to seeing what's next.

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