What was one continuous 35-foot long work of art turns into a nifty visual exercise and an engaging image for young folk.
There are only four colors—black, white, blue and rust—except for that long, long road, which is a shiny ocher. The text is equally minimalist, with only a handful of words per page. The cycling hero curls over his racing bike, now like a crochet hook, now like the capital letter L, now like the letter U, sideways. He races around the town, through a tunnel, over a bridge, hitting a bump, stopping, riding again. That shiny road widens and narrows but never ceases, and readers will gaze wide-eyed at what is along the way: a boy getting ice cream from a truck; a pregnant woman, with boy and dog in tow, buying groceries and waving; the circus tent outside of town and the lighthouse at water’s edge. Viva, an international cyclist and designer of New Yorker covers, among many other things, has a pleasing graphic style that indicates shape and movement with geometric form and line.
Great fun to look at; kids will feel the speed of the bike and the there-ness of place. (Picture book. 4-8)