An engaging conversation starter for parents and children about growth, change, death, and life.

SEVEN CIRCLES OF LIGHT

HOW THEY WERE BORN AND WHAT THEY BECAME

Seven circles of light explore mortality in this spiritual picture book.

In a fairy-tale–like opening, the Brightest Light lives alone, content, in the Big Quiet. But “one day, a Sharp Desire came…and changed everything.” The Brightest Light, looking like a soft white ball surrounded by darkness, encounters a prism that refracts light into colors. Now, the Brightest Light and seven balls of color live happily until the colors encounter a desire for more. The colors leave the Big Quiet for a world like Earth, becoming plants, animals, forces of nature, and humans. Violet and Red turn into lonely human girls who find each other and become friends, experiencing the strange feeling that they’ve met before. Eventually, the colors realize the time is coming to leave their incarnations and return to the Brightest Light, once again content until the desire for change resurfaces. Lucas does an impressive job of making this philosophical theme feel approachable and grounded. The author’s images vary in style. One resembles a doodle in a digital paint program while the images on the Earth-like world are more detailed cartoon illustrations with full backgrounds and a diverse human cast. Her handling of time passing in a panel-packed page seems natural, and the hints at death feel merely part of a cycle rather than sad.

An engaging conversation starter for parents and children about growth, change, death, and life.

Pub Date: July 30, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-73479-220-1

Page Count: 42

Publisher: Self

Review Posted Online: Sept. 22, 2020

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

A sweet, soft conversation starter and a charming gift.

Our Verdict

  • Our Verdict
  • GET IT

Google Rating

  • google rating
  • google rating
  • google rating
  • google rating
  • google rating
  • New York Times Bestseller

BECAUSE I HAD A TEACHER

A paean to teachers and their surrogates everywhere.

This gentle ode to a teacher’s skill at inspiring, encouraging, and being a role model is spoken, presumably, from a child’s viewpoint. However, the voice could equally be that of an adult, because who can’t look back upon teachers or other early mentors who gave of themselves and offered their pupils so much? Indeed, some of the self-aware, self-assured expressions herein seem perhaps more realistic as uttered from one who’s already grown. Alternatively, readers won’t fail to note that this small book, illustrated with gentle soy-ink drawings and featuring an adult-child bear duo engaged in various sedentary and lively pursuits, could just as easily be about human parent- (or grandparent-) child pairs: some of the softly colored illustrations depict scenarios that are more likely to occur within a home and/or other family-oriented setting. Makes sense: aren’t parents and other close family members children’s first teachers? This duality suggests that the book might be best shared one-on-one between a nostalgic adult and a child who’s developed some self-confidence, having learned a thing or two from a parent, grandparent, older relative, or classroom instructor.

A sweet, soft conversation starter and a charming gift. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: March 1, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-943200-08-5

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Compendium

Review Posted Online: Dec. 14, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2017

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

An engaging mix of gentle behavior modeling and inventive story ideas that may well provide just the push needed to get some...

RALPH TELLS A STORY

With a little help from his audience, a young storyteller gets over a solid case of writer’s block in this engaging debut.

Despite the (sometimes creatively spelled) examples produced by all his classmates and the teacher’s assertion that “Stories are everywhere!” Ralph can’t get past putting his name at the top of his paper. One day, lying under the desk in despair, he remembers finding an inchworm in the park. That’s all he has, though, until his classmates’ questions—“Did it feel squishy?” “Did your mom let you keep it?” “Did you name it?”—open the floodgates for a rousing yarn featuring an interloping toddler, a broad comic turn and a dramatic rescue. Hanlon illustrates the episode with childlike scenes done in transparent colors, featuring friendly-looking children with big smiles and widely spaced button eyes. The narrative text is printed in standard type, but the children’s dialogue is rendered in hand-lettered printing within speech balloons. The episode is enhanced with a page of elementary writing tips and the tantalizing titles of his many subsequent stories (“When I Ate Too Much Spaghetti,” “The Scariest Hamster,” “When the Librarian Yelled Really Loud at Me,” etc.) on the back endpapers.

An engaging mix of gentle behavior modeling and inventive story ideas that may well provide just the push needed to get some budding young writers off and running. (Picture book. 6-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 18, 2012

ISBN: 978-0761461807

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Amazon Children's Publishing

Review Posted Online: Aug. 22, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 2012

Did you like this book?

more