Children’s Picture Book Review
The Moth and the Sun, is a story in English, French and Spanish about a moth’s flight around Paris. As it flies, it struggles to realize its dream, while questioning and doubting itself.
Gary Bernard, the Philadelphia author and illustrator begins the book with an introductory fable that suggests the book may have magical power, unearthed and now passed on today. The illustrations where created some 20 years ago and has an archival feel.
The book was created after Gary traveled different countries visiting classrooms and inviting children to write their own story to his illustrations. The author has put together a story based on these ideas. The story is deliberately left open-ended and the reader is invited to write their own ending; an educational and clever concept.
Illustrations and extras:
Gary’s black ink drawings are representational, but abstract in design. I really liked them; however, they would definitely appeal to adults and older children more than the younger child. It may be different in Europe where they (appreciate) and are more familiar with the more arty picture books. The Moth And The Sun would be classified as one of those. I think Gary will have several adult buyers including appreciative teachers investing in this project.
Preliminary sketches from the illustrations are featured at the back of the book. This appealed to me and I assume would to teachers when used as teaching/writing tool (main intention I assume) but may be a little confusing when purchased as a story. The children may not understand why they are there or what they are for.
Quality and production:
It is evident by the quality of the draftsmanship and compositional design, Gary is a competent fine artist. If quality material is used, once in print, this book will be beautiful
I would suggest the background layer be varied to illuminate the Photoshop look and authenticate it more before printing. It was obvious to me that the book wasn’t real and the old pages looked the same throughout.
I received the review copy in PDF format so I cannot comment on publication quality of the printed version. On my iPad it require quite a bit of enlarging and shrinking to read and then view the related illustrations. I am not sure if I did in fact receive the final e-version though, as the book is a Kickstarter project.
About the author/illustrator:
To support his Kickstarter project (almost half way to target as I write) and get a copy go to the project here: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/658699367/the-moth-and-the-sun