cover image Hum and Swish

Hum and Swish

Matt Myers. Holiday House/Porter, $18.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-8234-4286-7

Jamie is engrossed in creating something at the beach: an elaborate assemblage of rocks, sticks, shells, claws, sand, and debris. “What are you making there?” a couple asks. “I don’t know,” Jamie says, not looking up. More passersby stop and query (“How cute is that?” say two teenagers) as Jamie works away, divulging nothing—although it’s clear she’s increasingly annoyed. Then a woman with an easel and paints sits down next to Jamie. “What are you making?” Jamie asks. “I don’t know yet,” says the woman, and they begin to work side-by-side. Where each ends up artistically is ultimately beside the point: what matters is the airy depiction of two artists creating intently and alone in tandem, each communing with the world around them on a special wavelength: “Jamie hums. The woman swishes her paintbrush in a jar.” Readers will connect with the heady, evocative acrylic and oil portrayal of the seashore by Myers (Battle Bunny) in his solo debut—its sharp, bright light; creamy waves; and golden sands. The rush of water, and the smell of sea salt mingled with sunscreen, seems to emanate from every page. Ages 4–8. [em](June) [/em]