Saturday, July 17, 2021

Book Review: The Chickadees and the Moon Above

The Chickadees and The Moon Above 
by Sara Simon
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The watercolours in this children's book make it worthwhile even if the type setting is less than ideal. For the art alone I would buy this book.

Our story is simple and cute. Here we meet a mother and her baby chickadees. As the babies grow up and move away she tells them to look at the moon, as she will be too, and they will all be sharing the same moon each night. A nice little truth that applies to anyone, anywhere in the world. The simplicity of it is likely to be understood by even a toddler; and it may have them looking for the moon in the sky at any given time (maybe in their life if the book makes a big enough impression). I also liked the inclusion of at least one chickadee that doesn't go on to marry and have more little chickadees. As a childless woman this little nod is quite important to me. I believe it's important that children know they have options in their lives and it doesn't have to be marriage and babies for everyone.

Let's talk about the biggest flaw of this book, and maybe no one else will really care but it stood out like a sore thumb to me. The typesetting. This book uses a nice serif font that is easy to read and would be good for kids who are learning to read. Except for one huge change. A white glow effect has been put on the black text. Now I know that it's because on the watercolours they were probably having trouble with readability. But a glow? What is this the 1980's? And what about the science that fonts with glows around them are distracting and hard to read. It completely removes this children's book from a level 1 or 2 reader's possible repertoire which I find very disappointing. Additionally it adds a lot of noise to the beautiful watercolour pages. I have to say, personally, shame on the illustrator, author, publisher, etc. for thinking this was a good 'solution' to their legibility concerns. I can think of half a dozen better ways to deal with legibility than to junk up the page with 'glowing' text. Now again, I realize most people won't care or maybe even notice; but as a past Art Director/Graphic Designer I just can't get over it. Good thing the watercolours are so pretty. They almost distract enough from this faux pas.

Overall this is a cute little story that would be perfect for anyone whose parents or guardians  live far away, or travel for work.

Please note: I received an eARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. This is an honest and unbiased review.

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1 comment:

Leonore Winterer said...

That sounds like a super cute little story, I'm glad the bad type setting didn't distract you from it too much :)