Both literally and figuratively a three-story book, this follow-up to BirdCatDog (2014) and FishFishFish (2015) illustrates the fantasy adventures of a girl (she) and a boy (he), along with the real story of their picnic and playtime together (we).
As this graphic novel is wordless, this book’s design helps with the telling. The top two horizontal panels, edged with wavy lines, delineate the imaginary, gendered stories—hers in deep pink, his in purple. The bottom panel, edged with straight lines, delivers the “real” story. Hence, the bottom panel illustrates a jolly day of play in the park with the girl’s stuffed bunny and the boy’s dog. In the girl’s adventure, she transforms into a rabbit and serves tea to entertain a strange, long-legged bird (clearly the transformed boy, still wearing his green cap). The purple middle panel, the boy’s story, exudes a sinister mood, but it should, since he tells readers in the front endpapers: “watch me defeat dark forces.” These are everywhere: in the sky, the landscape, and even in the picnic drink he thinks is poisoned. Readers will enjoy trying to make sense of this story while they appreciate just how differently boys and girls play.
Fun, adventure, misadventure, dragons, flying fish, and lots of color…maybe there’s something for everyone in this thrice-told tale. (Graphic adventure. 4-8)