We hosted 16 relatives (seven in our house) over the long Thanksgiving weekend. My job, besides cooking some stuff, was to read to the four little children in my daughter’s room each night before bed. And each night we read The Sign of the Seahorse: A Tale of Greed and High Adventure in Two Acts. By request. Begging, and requests. And more begging.
Graeme Base had me at Animalia, but this Aussie children’s book writer and illustrator just keeps getting better. Base shows his lyrical side with the writing of this tome, which is epic and rhythmic and descriptive all at once. My nephew kept popping up to peer more closely at the detailed drawings as each new twist of the plot emerged. The lovely fish Pearl, the brave crab soldier Bert, the evil sharks and the catfish gang came together in a well-written rhyme that had them engage in the previously mentioned begging–then promptly passing out.
That’s the sign of the very best kind of story. -Rita