Kirkus Reviews QR Code
SHADOW by Suzy Lee


by Suzy Lee & illustrated by Suzy Lee

Age Range: 4 - 8

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2010
ISBN: 978-0-8118-7280-5
Publisher: Chronicle

An ingenious girl plays with shadows in the attic. Items and actions take on lives of their own, and malignant forces appear. But the heroine prevails: Animals join forces, friendships are formed and all ends well come suppertime. In this wordless tale, Lee once again blurs the boundaries between the real and imagined. Done mainly in black-and-white charcoal and pencil, with yellow to indicate intensity, highlight emotions and signify fantasy, the illustrations are stimulating. The protagonist is drawn with heaps of character in a plain, industrial way. This, in contrast to the sterile renderings of the everyday attic items and the graphic shapes and layered values of the shadow world, creates visual interest. With this tale, the illustrator uses the same conceits as in Mirror (2010), though more successfully, presenting complexity yet leaving the girl’s sense of play intact. She also manages—in this era of the digital reader—to make the turning of the physical page a unique experience, one that readers will want to explore, discuss and return to. One hopes, however, she will explore new emotional and narrative ground in her next book. (Picture book. 4-8)