cover image The Night Walk

The Night Walk

Marie Dorléans, trans. from the French by Polly Lawson. Floris, $17.95 (32p) ISBN 978-1-78250-639-3

A pale-skinned family of four—two parents and two children—takes a blissful summer night walk into the countryside that gives way to a breathless conclusion in this picture book by Dorléans. Narrated by one of the children, the prose shines with sensory acuity as the family leaves a village behind them with a particular location in mind. “We left the road, and the path/ climbed gently out of the valley./ A train sliced through the darkness,” one verso page reads as the family overlooks a landscape of fastidiously needled trees against a star-studded sky. Navy washes overlay graphite pencil and digital illustrations, with fine-lined detail so startlingly observed that readers will feel immersed in each expansive spread. Suspense builds as sparse beams of light illuminate the darkness page by page and each spread carries the family forward through the night. A graceful, perfectly paced appreciation of nature. Ages 3–7. [em](Apr.) [/em]