Children’s Book Reviews
Children's Book Reviews: The Not-So-Faraway Adventure
Publish August 31, 2016
In The Imaginary Garden (2009), Toronto author Andrew Larsen warmly portrayed the familial bond between a little girl and her beloved grandfather. Theodora and Poppa return with more genuine, slice-of-life escapades in The Not-So-Faraway Adventure. Theo loves looking through Poppa’s old steamer trunk, which is packed to the brim with mementoes from his world travels. With Poppa’s birthday fast approaching, Theo takes inspiration from the keepsake maps, menus and photographs, and plans a memorable trip right in their own neighbourhood. Irene Luxbacher’s luminous mixed-media, collage illustrations convey every leg of their journey, from climbing onboard a crowded yellow streetcar, to waving at passing pedestrians along the way, and finally arriving at the sparkling blue waters of their city beach destination. Crowded urban scenes are filled with eclectic storefronts, dog walkers, and cyclists. Fashioned out of fabric swatches, the characters’ clothing seem to pop off the page with bursts of pattern and colour. This sweet tale evocatively captures everyday excitement: the sharp clang of a streetcar bell, the tangy taste of slurped gazpacho soup, and the ticklish sensation of sinking your feet into cool sand. A grand adventure is always just around the corner when you are with someone you love.
Illustration EN: Irene Luxbacher
ISBN 13: 978-1-77138-097-3
Linda Ludke is a librarian at London Public Library. Her reviews have appeared in Quill and Quire, School Library Journal and CM: Canadian Review of Materials. When she’s not reading and writing she also loves searching for vintage treasures.
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