Silly Lilly and the Four Seasons
by Agnes Rosenstiehl
TOON Books ran out of copies of their three debut titles before they even hit the shelves the other week. I got an email press release (as I suspect a lot of bloggers did, but I'm too lazy to check Technorati) with a fun quote from the publishers:
“We were in the middle of preparing for our launch,” says Editorial Director Françoise Mouly, also the Art Editor of The New Yorker, “but I couldn’t imagine a more welcome distraction.”
I plan to review all three titles, but picked Silly Lilly as my immediate favorite for its understated simplicity and total girl appeal. Like all graphic novels, the story is told in comic format, though the gap between picture book and graphic novel has all but disappeared. About the only way I didn't know this was, in fact, a picture book is that there's no narration, no text imposed over the art except in Lilly's speech bubbles.
The book breaks into five short vignettes, one for each season plus a bonus Spring. In each, Lilly sets herself a simple task, such as going to the park or the beach or picking apples. And that's it--though every story has its twist at the end, when a sea shell has a tiny inhabitant or a snowball goes astray.
It's all Lilly, and she's all glee and giggles, a pen-and-ink Everygirl who can turn any day into a pleasant adventure.
I'm all for it.