A silver-haired, solitary moon-watcher
and a young, likewise solitary visitor find what they need in each other.

“At dawn, the sun jeweled tree and
rooftops alike.” Written in richly allusive, atmospheric prose that will keep
lovers of words pinned to the page, this original tale brings together Mirada,
dreamlessly rocking away each night with the moon her sole companion, and a
vagrant, straw-haired lad known down in the village only as “Get Out Of The
Way, Boy,” or sometimes “Take That, Boy.” Never uttering a sound aside from an
occasional “Merry, merry” from a fragmentary memory of a boat song, the child
lives in fear and hunger until he wanders one night into Mirada’s garden, where
a glimpse of him, “walking-stick thin” and dressed in rags, reawakens memories
of her own, long-gone family. She invites him in for tea, and soup, and
bread—and from that moment the two are inseparable, as days and seasons and
years go by and the moon watches over all. Using such a subdued palette that
day can hardly be told from night in her transparent, woodsy watercolors, Ando
goes for close-ups of faces (all white) and unframed natural scenes that spill
over the trimmed edges or fade into open space.

It’s pitched most directly to older
audiences, but younger ones may catch some of the sonic, thematic, and
emotional resonances. (Picture book. 8-12, adult)

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