I love picture books that don't contain any words. Books like this offer a child freedom to use their own imaginations and create their own stories from what they see in the pictures. Often times, their elaborate tales are much more than would have been conveyed through a few sentences on a page. I was recently given the opportunity to read Mark Ludy's book "Noah: A Wordless Picture Book".
I would dare say that most people, whether Christian or not, have heard the Biblical story of Noah and the account of the flood. To most people, this is a familiar story so I was intrigued as to how it could be made into a picture book and still convey the Biblical story. The book's synopsis made me curious to review it too.
God wanted Noah to build the biggest ship the world had ever seen. The future of humanity depended on it. How would his wife respond? What would the neighbors think? Was it even feasible? This lavish reimagining of one of the greatest stories of all time will fascinate children and adults alike. Nuanced and playful, yet meticulous in following the Biblical narrative, Mark Ludy's world-class art digs deeper than the Sunday-school tale of cuddly animals, exploring Noah's relationship with his family, the natural world, God - and a formidable engineering challenge. Immerse yourself in this stunning wordless epic. Whatever your age, you'll never read this story in the same way again.
The first thing I noticed about this book was the incredible artwork. Ludy's drawings are incredibly detailed and beautiful. They almost look life-like and realistic and you want to touch the pages to see if you can "feel" the art. Every single aspect of the drawings shows meticulous detail and design. There are single page designs and two-page folds to help you craft the story as you flip the pages.
This little guy (our 9 yr old) LOVED this book. He grabbed it up immediately when it arrived and has spent days looking at it. He has even "read" me the story using his own imagination and creativity to narrate each page. He was already quite familiar with the Biblical story of Noah so it was so much fun to hear how his mind crafted the story using the provided artwork. Some of his creativity was pretty funny too such as what he thought the animals were saying in the pictures and he had some pretty unique thoughts on what Noah was doing in some of the pages too. We have truly enjoyed watching him use this book and hearing him "read" this book aloud.
This page in the book really spoke to me. I grew up in a Christian home and am very familiar with the story of Noah and the flood (which by the way I believe happened just as the Bible describes it). To be honest, I've never really thought much about how Noah's wife was impacted by what Noah did. After looking at this picture awhile, I couldn't help but think about how Noah's wife must have felt through it all...the ridicule of supposed friends, watching her husband labor and work so hard, did she wonder if he was crazy or did she trust him and what he was doing, did her heartache knowing what was to come through the flood and how everything they knew would perish, etc. It is amazing that a wordless picture book can bring to mind such a time of thought.
Of course, one of Wyatt's favorite parts of the book is the hidden treasure on each page. On the back cover of the book, it shows a picture of a little mouse named "Squeakers". Then it tells you to try to find Squeakers on every page of the book. This is a lot like those "Where's Waldo?" books where you have to find Waldo in a haystack. Well, Squeakers can be a challenging little booger to find too! It's not as easy as you think but it is so much fun to try to find him. Wyatt and I even had challenges to see who could find him fastest (although it turns out Wyatt had already found him on every page except for 2 by the time he challenged me...little stinker)! Did you see Squeakers in the picture above?
Yep, that's him hiding in the grape bowl eating grapes! The really fun part is that he doesn't look the same on every page. He might be big, little, a sketch, a cartoon mouse, etc. so it really keeps you on your toes to find him. We still haven't found him on a couple of pages but we are all still trying. Let me just tell you, some of those two-fold pages have some serious details on them!
This hardcover 64-page book is a must have for families, for church libraries, would make a great gift for a children's minister or student minister, and for school or local libraries. You can read more about the book here or purchase it below.
The sweet folks at FlyBy Promotions are already in the holiday spirit of giving and they are offering one of my readers their very own copy of this book. For your chance to win, simply enter on the form below: