Every time Governor General’s Literary Award–winning brothers Eric Fan and Terry Fan (of The Barnabus Project) join forces for a picture-book collaboration, magic happens. Their latest, Lizzy and the Cloud, is no exception.
Lizzy, a young girl with tight curls of brown hair, is especially eager for her weekly walk in the park with her parents. Not because of the new carousel or the puppet show, but rather because of the Cloud Seller. Today, Lizzy is going to buy a pet cloud.
There’s a parrot-, a rabbit-, and even an elephant-shaped cloud available for purchase, but Lizzy picks an ordinary everyday cloud that she promptly names Milo, as naming your cloud is the first step in the “Caring For Your Cloud” instruction manual. She follows the other steps diligently, making sure to water Milo daily and take Milo out for walks. As the months pass, her pet cloud grows and grows until Milo’s too big for her bedroom, and Lizzy realizes, in a poignant moment that tugs at your heart, that the best thing for the cloud she has come to love is to set it free.
Accompanying the text are stunning full-page illustrations that’ll have readers both young and old devouring each luscious detail. Some spreads are in black and white with just a single pop of colour, most often yellow. Others leap off the page with every colour of the rainbow. This shift from one to the other evokes a wide-eyed wonder that’ll keep readers fully engaged in the story.
Lizzy and the Cloud is yet another example of what the Fan Brothers do so effortlessly: write books filled with heart and whimsy. This is one that readers – including me – will want to return to again and again.