Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews



Patrick McDonnell
Picture Book
For ages 4 and up
Little Brown, 2006   ISBN: 978-0316114912

Art is a little boy who loves to draw and paint and when he really gets going you better watch out because he can really get carried away. The paint flies, the crayon zigs and zigs, curls and waves across the page. For Art creating his "plotches with blotches," his dots, and his "scribbles that squiggle" are wonderful joyous experiences.

Mind you, there are also those times when you have to act and plan. If you create the perfect doodle man for example, then you have to provide for him. You have to create a dog, a house, a car, a tree, a moon and all the other necessities of life to make him happy. These are the times when one's imagination takes over, when one's creations acquire a life of their own.

This unique picture book is an enchanting celebration of the creative process and it explores the relationship that a little boy has with his art. The author has found a wonderful way to reach out to us, his readers, through his appealing little boy character who paints and draws his way across the blank pages with so much untamed enthusiasm. Of course, just like all boys and girls, Art is very proud when his mother hangs his creations on the door of the refrigerator.

With the most minimal of texts, this picture book will delight readers of all ages. Young children will love Art with his big smile and his slap dash paint brush style. Older readers will appreciate that sometimes one has to do what Art does ? draw that first doodle and see where it takes you.