Born on an island for imaginary friends, Beekle gets tired of waiting for child to claim him and sets off to the “real world” to find a child of his own. It takes a while, but he does meet his friend and then they go on to have adventures of imagination together. A simple, sweet tale.
The illustrations in The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend are colorful, whimsical, and friendly. There is a clear contrast between the imaginary creatures (bright! vibrant! full of color!) and the “real world” (grey and stark). It’s a joy to watch the color spread once Beekle meets his friend. All of Santat’s illustrations are just a joy for the eyes, I have to say.
Dan Santat has been illustrating picture books for other authors for about a decade now – including one of our favorites, Fire! Fuego! Brave Bomberos, and has both written and illustrated three books total (Beekle, The Guild of Geniuses, and a graphic novel, Sidekicks, which is where I first discovered Santat a few years ago!). Santat also does commercial illustration, and created the Disney Channel series, The Replacements.
Simple enough to appeal to younger toddlers, with enough visual interest to engage preschoolers, The Adventures of Beekle is a winner!
One of my Life List goals is to read all of the Caldecott winners. This is my seventh post about a Caldecott book. You can read the other Caldecott posts here.