cover image Sweep


Louise Greig, illus. by Júlia Sardà. Simon & Schuster, $17.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-5344-3908-5

Greig (The Night Box) writes about Ed, a boy who lets his bad mood get the better of him. Sardà (Duckworth, the Difficult Child) shows Ed standing with a broom, in an unhappy mood that “swept over him in a raging storm and stuck.” A breeze toys with his leaf pile, blowing one leaf into his face and causing him to trip over his broom. He can’t control his anger, and he takes to sweeping “until, suddenly the whole thing became bigger than him.” In sleek, stylish art, Sardà creates a hilarious sequence of hyperbolic spreads as Ed’s ire drives him to roll through the town: the leaf pile engulfs a scooter and a bicycle, then several cars and a city tram. Gigantic heaps dwarf the buildings, which are captured with loving architectural detail; city transit comes to a standstill; children romp through the piles. Ed is running out of steam (“Ed was beginning to wish it had all blown over”), but he can’t quite give up the pleasure of his bad mood—“not when he had gone to all this trouble.” At last, he reflects on the chaos he’s caused (“For a moment Ed felt rather silly”), and a small miracle improves his outlook. He’ll choose more wisely next time, Grieg suggests. The lesson about managing one’s emotions edifies, while Sardà’s illustrations lift the spirits. Ages 4–8. [em](Sept.) [/em]