While moon gazing is surely a universal experience, not everyone sees the same thing.
As Kim explains in a note, her narrative is inspired by the Korean custom of searching the surface of a full moon for the silhouette of a rabbit using a mortar and pestle to make rice cakes. The story opens in a bedroom, where a raccoon is writing a message, folding the paper into an airplane, and sending it skyward. The view pans to other animals sending their wishes as well. The missives collect in the heavenly mortar, and as Rabbit stirs, the paper transforms into stars until “Wishes fill the sky with light… / …twinkling in the starry night.” Kim’s scenes are drawn in pencil and then digitally colored, and they have a softness around the edges, establishing a cozy mood that is sustained by the gentle rhymes. Dark backgrounds provide a foil for the starlight, and panels transition to luminous full bleeds, enhancing the magical effect. Kim diverges from tradition by showing that Rabbit has wishes too. In a buoyant, breezy sequence, the creature inflates a star, attaches a string, and floats to Earth to play with the animals. They ride bicycles, drift along in boats, and enjoy readings in the forest. When the lunar cycle is complete and the sky is dark, Rabbit must return home. Once there, however, an airborne delivery enables the long-distance friends to see one another and stay connected.
Lilting lines combine with endearing characters in an effervescent examination of fulfilled desires and kindness reciprocated. (Picture book. 2-5)