Review Detail

Kids Fiction 253
A Debut Picture Book About Unlikely Friends
Overall rating
Writing Style
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
Mole is happy in his dark, cozy burrow, but when he hears commotion overhead, he ventures outside to find out what is happening. The light is blinding, though, and he quickly stumbles and falls asleep in a dark corner of the woods. At night, he meets Wolf, who is afraid of the dark. Together, they help pass the time and become fast friends.

This is a sweet story, and could be used with young children to talk about friendship. Indeed, the promotional material from the publisher notes that “differences aren’t necessarily weaknesses and strengths are most powerful when used to help a friend.” I did find myself wondering why Mole was scared of the light but not of a wolf, but these types of “differences” could be more precisely spelled out with the help of an adult.

This is Armo’s first picture book, and at times, it shows. Her illustrations are inconsistent, in places, richly textured and fully rendered, and in other places, seemingly unfinished and clearly Photoshopped. Another example of a way that she could have pushed the illustrations further is with the cover, title page and first page, which each bear the same image. Though this is not a book I will likely read again, I will look for more from Arno in the future.
Good Points
It has potential to prompt discussion about friendship, fear, and courage.

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