Busyness in Life Through In A Particular Illustrated Book
If you think the stay-at-home mom has an easy, relaxed life, I’m here to tell you that we don’t. I’m the family secretary: I make phone calls during business hours that my husband can’t, along with doctor’s appointments and correspondence. I’ve got housework, like any other normal person, but in between all that, I have a toddler who often pesters me for food. Not just three square meals, either; lately, it seems he wants a snack in between all those meals, too. Along with the logistics with outings to keep his mind sharp, errands that normality and my organized religion require, and time for myself and for sanity, the day is full.
Along with all that, we’re looking for a house. We’ve gotten a pre-approval for a loan and we’re looking at houses at every spare moment. We’ve even made an offer on a house already. And all this talk of houses and the stories that houses and cities bring make me think of a particular book.
Yes, a book– nowadays, I bet you can find a book on every subject. This subject has been covered before, but as much as I love books and as much as I read children’s books to Toby, it’s a subject worth writing about again. Today, it’s about a book called Anno’s Journey.
Unlike one of the last books I wrote about, I didn’t read this as a kid. First of all, it can’t be read–there are no words inside. It’s got an element of “Where’s Waldo?” in it, which I did devour as a kid, but this is drawn by Waldo. Specifically, the author puts himself on every page because he’s the one making the journey. His presence brings the book together and really does make it into a journey through the pages. I had fun trying to find him before looking at the rest of the detail.
And there’s lots of detail. Tiny figures of villagers, animals, wagons, trains… but mostly people and the places they live. What they do for entertainment, how they interact as a community, and all without video games, computers, and buses. Unfortunately, there’s also a lack of bright color; I understand that was hard to people in the particular time period that Anno is portraying. It also means that Toby isn’t interested for very long. The journey plot just isn’t succinct enough for him.
I don’t think the lack of color is a bad thing; it just means that I have another book to study during my brief periods of Me Time. The only bad thing about the book: I was expecting him to be journeying toward home, and he doesn’t arrive at a homecoming. And what would a book review be if it gave away the ending?
I loved examining it. So if –no, no: when– you check it out or buy it for yourself, be sure to examine it thoroughly for yourself before handing it to a kid older than two or three. And while you do, think of me while I’m spending time with Just’In’s mom: this weekend, she’s coming to visit us on her first trip out of her state since our wedding, more than six years ago.