An alluring light takes two curious companions on a whimsical trip.
The phrase “One dull morning” opens this otherwise mostly wordless book. Rendered in detailed, fine-lined drawings blotted with warm, subdued hues of watercolor, a round, mustachioed man in a top hat and bow tie finds his pet iguana in the garden in hot pursuit of…something. The giant lizard, fitted with a riding saddle, is trying to eat a flying half-bug, half-mammal hybrid. This creature is portrayed with a translucent glowing yellow stomach, antennae, and a single, large eye as its face. This creature successfully dodges the iguana’s tongue while whizzing away on its own errand. Captivated, the man mounts his iguana, riding it after the creature on a remarkable adventure told mostly in small, square panels that occasionally open up to expansive single- and double-page illustrations. Slight gaps in the storytelling appear occasionally, requiring readers to re-examine past pages. In a forest, numerous flying creatures flit amid large, glowing golden flowers, gathering light much as bees gather honey, prompting the man to dig up a single bloom in hopes of luring the creatures and their illumination back home. The final image of the man, who has light skin, riding a saddled flying fish hints at another quest. China-based Yang supplies a short synopsis at the conclusion that provides some clarity.
An imperfect ride, yet sure to stir the imagination nonetheless. (Picture book. 5-9)