cover image Lizzy and the Cloud

Lizzy and the Cloud

The Fan Brothers. Simon & Schuster, $18.99 (56p) ISBN 978-1-5344-8317-0

Lizzy, a thoughtful light-skinned child with a mass of curly hair, lives with her parents on a previous era’s city street, where zeppelins hover and pigeons flock and oranges cost a penny. Even though “clouds were a bit out of fashion,” one Saturday at the park, Lizzy buys a cloud on a string from the umbrella-hatted Cloud Seller, who offers a range of puffy mists in various sizes and shapes. Lizzy names the cloud Milo, and tends it carefully, following the instructions in a single-page manual: watering it daily, walking it, and letting it soar out the window on its string. But Milo grows and grows, and it’s not long before a thunderstorm in Lizzy’s room nudges her toward the realization that Milo can’t remain pent-up; soon, she frees it with an air of quiet accomplishment. In delicate gray shading and faded colors, the Fan Brothers’ (It Fell from the Sky) dreamy, alternative world offers a vision of a different kind of pet, a being that obligingly rains on Lizzy’s plants (a small, faint rainbow hovering just beneath it), alongside an understated meditation on change and letting go. Ages 4–8. (May)