The siblings of Look (2018) are back, this time delving into words with a double L.
The sun greets sister and brother with a warm “hello” at their campground. Navigating “valley” and “hilltop,” the family drives to a beach amusement park to “yell,” “gallop,” and “thrill.” At “nightfall” they roast “marshmallow[s]” and then “collapse” onto a “pillow” after a full day. As in their debut, the sunglasses-clad sister and baseball-capped brother daytrip to (mostly) one word per page. The artwork, done with markers, rubber stamps, and digital compositing, showcases Woodcock’s cheerful, primary color palette. Sometimes labored, her most effective work focuses on shapes and playful compositions rather than lighting. The “ll” in “gallop” are formed by the posts on carousel horses; the “ll” in “marshmallow” are two sticks holding the puffy confections aloft. “YELL,” on the other hand, is depicted, one letter at a time, descending the articulated dips of a mammoth slide. The wit in “THRILL / SHRILL / (ILL)” resides in textual juxtaposition alone rather than the words’ incorporation into the illustration of the “rollercoaster.” An exemplary piece is the title page, on which the “ll” of the title are formed by the shadow cast by the indigo-haired girl standing in front of the sun. Deliciously colored end pages, patterned with the letter “L,” highlight the design’s appeal. Both kids have light skin.
Woodcock captures the joy of a summer day’s adventure in this diverting romp through a thematic concept. (Picture book. 4-8)