Bloom! A Little Book About Finding Love

Maria Van Lieshout, Author, Molly Leach, Designed by
Maria Van Lieshout, Author, Molly Leach, Designed by . Feiwel and Friends $12.95 (48p) ISBN 978-0-312-36913-2
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As light and sweet as cotton candy, this saga of a pig in love will win over kids and grownups alike. Van Lieshout’s loosely drawn pen and ink illustrations, mostly on stark white pages, wring Oscar-winning expressions from the slenderest curves and squiggles. The minimalist text begins before the title page, when Bloom’s faithful friend urges her to join him playing in a puddle. The insouciant pig declines, declaring, in type of varying size, that she feels like “dancing and singing… and stretching out under the flowers.” In a beguiling version of love at first sight, Bloom spies a butterfly, the only blue object seen in a book that features pink font, pink pigs and pink flowers. “A flying flower!” she gasps, and then bats her eyes at it. After fluttering nearby and wresting a profession of love from Bloom, the butterfly departs, leaving a heartbroken heroine. Van Lieshout’s deft use of line comes through in Bloom’s distressed dismay, a cross between toddler meltdown and Juliet, which is happily cut short by the attentions of Bloom’s faithful swine swain. This paper-over-board book’s stylish design and small square format designate it as a natural for Valentine’s Day. All ages. (Jan.)

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