Sunday, April 23, 2023

Today's review... Skydance by Faith Hubley

Today's read caught my eye due to the creative direction. Plus, it pays homage to a short film produced in the early 1980's, and I'm always a fan of promoting a bit of the this case art/film history and a renowned illustrator. Science fiction is, actually, the theme in these pages, which also surprised me and spiked my curiosity. But before I ramble on more, let's just head on in. Oh, and I added a link to the original film if you're curious.

by Faith Hubley
Illustrated by Elizabeth Swados
Anthology Editions
Picture Book / Science Fiction
32 pages 
ages 4 to 8

We are the creatures of the sky
We jump
We whirl
O dancing
We are dancing
Belly floating
Sky swimming
Crackle crackle zing hello

The sky creatures reach out and invite a child to join them in a swirling, joyous, celestial celebration. A tribute to life on other planets is brought to life in Faith Hubley’s full-color illustrations and Elizabeth Swados’s evocative sounds and rhythm. Anthology is honored to publish Skydance, adapted from Faith Hubley’s now-classic animated film and reprinted for the first time since its release in 1981.

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The short film, Sky Dance, which released in 1981, was said to be a celebration of animation and jazz music as it portrayed a playful meeting of life in space. This book brings the artistic animation into picture book form, while adding a poetic flair.

I did take a peek at the original film when diving into this book, which isn't necessary in order to enjoy the read but does bring some insight for an adult reader. The poetry/text added to the book is very well done. It sets a positive atmosphere and is interesting as well as fun to read. There are a few repeated phrases, which will get listeners to join in a tiny bit, and the entire thing as a playful touch. The vocabulary is well fit for the intended age group and slides right in with the illustrations. It's a nicely done read.

The illustrations reflect excerpts from the film, which is also the purpose of this read. These will be a question of taste. They take a modern and very artistic direction. I thought they were interesting, but my kids said they weren't their thing. So, that side will have to be decided from reader to reader. I do, however, see this as a great way to introduce young audiences to a more time orientated direction in the art world. It'd make a nice read for groups, classrooms, or homeschoolers before jumping into a new art theme and will inspire them to make creations of their own.

Here's the original film:

You can learn more here:

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