cover image Tomorrow Most Likely

Tomorrow Most Likely

Dave Eggers, illus. by Lane Smith. Chronicle, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-4521-7278-1

On the title page of this meditation by Eggers (Her Right Foot), a child is seen lying in bed, hands folded expectantly. Eggers makes a small, safe promise: “Tomorrow most likely/ there will be a sky./ And chances are it will be blue.” Line by line, the possibilities grow as Smith (Grandpa Green) shows the boy, a child of color, waking, finding breakfast, and exploring city streets in a canary-yellow fedora. Spreads and panel sequences offer a kaleidoscope of sprightly colors and textures: thick paint-stroke layers, sponging, bits of collage. The soothing repetition of “tomorrow most likely” provides an ostinato for quirky, tongue-in-cheek observations (“There will be a squirrel/ And chances are his name is Stu”). The litany ends with an affirmation: “Tomorrow most likely/ will be a great day/ because you are in it.” Occasionally, Eggers’s vision of childhood experiences seems driven more by rhyme scheme than close observation (“You’ll hear something odd..../ You’ll meet Cousin Todd”). Books about outside exploration in the countryside abound. Here, the urban setting gives city kids a poem that belongs to them. Ages 3–5. [em]Agent: Steven Malk, Writers House. (Apr.) [/em]