At my library, they entice picture book readers by standing books up on top of the low bookshelves. This is one of my favorite places to search for great books, because the children's librarian here has such great taste. Because this book still had a clean and intact cover as it stood on top of the shelf, I could tell it was new, and the beautiful cover illustration drew me in immediately. I have not come back! In a Blue Roomis my current number one favorite when it comes to picture books.
In a very yellow room, a mother brings sleep-encouraging items to her little one. Consistently, the little girl demands each to be blue. None are, but her mother manages to convince her sleepy daughter to settle in for bedtime. Finally, as the little girl can withstand sleep no longer, she finally (and wonderfully) gets her wish for blue.
The text and pictures in this book are a match made in heaven. Tricia Tusa does great illustrations, and I have seen some, but after seeing this book, I would like to see more. They are perfect! Each illustration is done at a beautiful and creative angle, with details that give a lot of feeling to the home and atmosphere, and the relationship between mother and daughter. (I wish I could live in the adorable house!) Tusa also has a way of making magic known in her pictures, as she does in this book.
Jim Averbeck is an author I am not familiar with, but I hope this is not his last children's book. One thing I appreciate about a children's book author, is when it's obvious that they are truly familiar with children. This appears to be true with Averbeck. The little girl's insistence rings very true to me during the reading. The mother is as sweet and patient as all mothers wish to be, but also as inventive. This is a simple but clever story, one that can be read and appreciated at different levels by various ages, making it a book that allows much revisiting.
To see an interview with artist Tricia Tusa, click here.