Grandad, Esmé, and Tate search for their cousins in this latest outing from Cronin.
As Grandad peruses a photo album, Esmé and Tate discover photos (reproduced in the frontispiece for visual reference) of “long-lost” cousins Yuki, Jada, Awan, and Luis. The intrepid trio set out to find the cousins, traveling by boat to the icy place where Yuki lives in a fanciful, three-story igloo and then by train, looking for Awan in a watery landscape of bridges and boats. Next, they strap into a plane, flying above rainbow-striped hills where Luis lives. Finally, they cross the sand atop a camel to Jada’s desert town. Following a family reunion and group photo, Grandad discovers they’ve lost their goggles, canteen, whistle, compass, telescope, and sailor hat (all visually reproduced to aid detection) along the way and must retrace their steps to find the missing gear. Once again, Cronin (The Lost Christmas, 2018, etc.) orchestrates cunning visual challenges, directly inviting readers to search four distinct, amazingly detailed, surreal landscapes to locate Yuki, Jada, Awan, and Luis and then double back to find the diabolically concealed lost items. Forming mazes of pattern and line, psychedelic acrylic illustrations beg close inspection of wonderland details and nonsensical juxtapositions. It is a pity that this canine extended family’s search rests upon stereotypically exotic cues, however.
A challenging search-and-find adventure. (Picture book. 3-7)