Forsaken and left to confront their doubts and dreads, a brave young child and a buoyant creature fall through vibrant, extraordinary new worlds in Mendoza’s (contributor: The Real Folk Blues, 2019, etc.) kaleidoscopic ode to metamorphosis.
Bloom awakens from a deep sleep. It’s another day with Bee, checking on the potatoes, fishing on the lake, and pondering the city from a safe distance. The crackling radio disrupts their night by the fire. A plea fills the air, and before Bloom’s ready, Bee heads out to answer it. Left alone to “watch the lake,” Bloom fills the days with routines until Bee’s extended absence moves Bloom to leap into the lake. Transported in a swirl of colors, Bloom reemerges in another world and meets an exiled creature named Gloopy, whose half-hearted, distracted assistance during the Moon Harvest preparations results in catastrophe. Together, Bloom and Gloopy slip into a different place, kicking off a multiworld voyage back to their respective homes. From the first spread to the last image, Mendoza’s gorgeous, surrealist artwork presents imaginative depths both refreshing and disorienting. Poignant catharsis surfaces through tearful declarations and emotional strife as Bloom and Gloopy reflect on their strengths and weaknesses amid unusual environments (imagine playing games with a giant lizard or discussing creative ambition with a wistful AI–like being). Both Bloom and Bee are brown skinned, and the author uses “they/them” pronouns throughout.
An exceptional road taken. (Graphic dystopia. 12-adult)