Along a Long Road

Frank Viva, Author, Frank Viva, Illustrator
Frank Viva. Little, Brown, $16.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-316-12925-1
Hardcover - 33 pages - 978-1-4434-0620-8
Paperback - 40 pages - 978-0-06-180219-5
Library Binding - 40 pages - 978-0-06-180218-8
Hardcover - 40 pages - 978-0-06-180217-1
Ebook - 40 pages - 978-1-4434-0621-5
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A note explains that newcomer Viva created the art for this celebration of cycling "as a single, continuous thirty-five-foot-long piece of art." The uniting element is a golden, glossy ribbon of road that winds, unbroken (but for a tunnel), through the matte pages of the entire book, even onto the endpapers and covers. Suggestive of linocut prints, Viva's artwork combines supple curves, big areas of soft black background, light blue for water and shading, and the occasional brick-red accent; it's simultaneously stylish and restrained. Simple, lilting text reproduces the smooth, rhythmic pace of cycling and the meditative state of mind it induces. "Along a long road," Viva starts, showing the cyclist in a grove of birches, "going up," he continues, as the cyclist climbs an incline, passing a snail. "Around a small town and down," he continues, as the road snakes past a football field, a bird flies overhead, and a figure on a tractor waves in the distance. It's the kind of book that creates a mood rather than telling a story, evoking the freedom of traveling, the joy of movement, and the exhilaration of being outside. Ages 3–6. (June)
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