A Child of Books
Authors: Oliver Jeffers and Sam Winston
Published by September 6th, 2016
Summary: New York Times best-selling author-illustrator Oliver Jeffers and fine artist Sam Winston deliver a lyrical picture book inspiring readers of all ages to create, to question, to explore, and to imagine.
A little girl sails her raft across a sea of words, arriving at the house of a small boy and calling him away on an adventure. Through forests of fairy tales and across mountains of make-believe, the two travel together on a fantastical journey that unlocks the boy’s imagination. Now a lifetime of magic and adventure lies ahead of him . . . but who will be next?
Combining elegant images by Oliver Jeffers and Sam Winston’s typographical landscapes shaped from excerpts of children’s classics and lullabies, A Child of Books is a stunning prose poem on the rewards of reading and sharing stories—an immersive and unforgettable reading experience that readers will want to pass on to others.
Review: Oliver Jeffers has a way of writing such thought-provoking books with beautiful artwork that are just a bit weird yet so brilliant that you can’t help but reading it over and over. I know that sounds like such a fan girl review, but if you’ve read any of his books, you know exactly what I am talking about. Jeffers’s newest book is no exception. This book is about how stories can carry you wherever your imagination can imagine. The brilliance of actually using words from classic books to carry the main character on her journey shows how all of these books have carried so many readers on adventures that only an author’s imagination mixed with the reader’s imagination could take them on.
Teachers’ Tools for Navigation: Allusion and theme are where my mind automatically goes to when reading this book. First, you can look at the words that are used as the setting to look at why the authors chose these specific allusions. For example, during the sea scenes, they use Gulliver’s Travels, The Adventure of Pinocchio, The Swiss Family Robinson, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Robinson Crusoe, The Voyages of Dr. Dolittle, and more. Why would these books specifically be chosen for those scenes? What other pieces of literature are used throughout the book and why? I also think the theme is very clear, but it will spark a really great conversation.
Discussion Questions: What is theme of the book?; Why did the author chose specific texts for different settings?
“I have sailed across a sea of words to ask if you will come away with me.”
Read This If You Loved: Anything by Oliver Jeffers, The Marvels by Brian Selznick, Nibbles: The Book Monster by Emma Yarlett, Sophie Quire and the Last Storyguard by Jonathan Auxier, The Whisper by Pamela Zagarenski