Sunday, January 28, 2024

Today's read... The Night Whale by Bryher Mackenzie

Today's read is one that readers will still need to have a bit of patience before they can pick it up...but isn't the anticipation often as fun as the event itself? I saw this book while shuffling through upcoming reads and was so taken in by the cover that I had to take a peek. I'm hoping this is one, which invites to dreams. Let's take a look and see what this whale is all about.

by Bryher Mackenzie
Illustrated by Gillian Eilidh O'Mara
Walker Books
Picture Book
32 pages
ages 3 to 7


And I know then what the Night Whale is saying. I understand. "Anything is possible."

A grandmother and grandchild look out for the Night Whale, a magical sky creature last seen when Nana was a child herself. The story transports the reader off to a world of wonder and beauty, as they soar over cities and landscapes on the back of the Night Whale, far away from home and back again. This is a beautifully lyrical and stunningly illustrated picture book about adventures and moving on, helping children to come to terms with saying goodbye, and the majestic Night Whale's reassuring message is that anything is possible.



This is a beautifully illustrated read, which invites to fantasy and dreams.

A little girl is excited as she heads to the hill with her grandmother. They have hot chocolate, a blanket, and are ready to wait for an amazing moment to touch the stars above. Then, it's there, the thing her grandmother has waited for the last years—the Night Whale. It's amazing to watch, and that's already enough to make the girl smile, but then, it offers both her grandmother and her a ride. 

This makes an excellent, bedtime read. The text carries a poetic flow as it follows the girl and her grandmother from star-gazing to the fantastical ride on the whale through the sky. The words, however, take a more background role as the illustrations carry each magical scene and lead the reader on the imaginative journey. These are beautifully done and invite to endless possibilities, where nothing is impossible. Dreams open up, while offering a sense of calmness on every page.

There's a loving relationship between the grandmother and her grandchild, which whispers of wisdom and trust. It's warming and full of good feelings. There is a hint of future hope to round things off in a very positive way and promises of so much more to come. As the last page ends, good dreams seem very near.

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