A joyous, gentle picture book for readers 4-8, Every Color of Light paints a paean to the colors of nature and the natural world. While it’s a quiet book in the traditional sense, its pages are filled with noise and motion, from whipping wind and thundering rain to flickering stars.
Nature’s poetry springs alive on every page in Ryōji Arai’s gorgeous illustrations and in the evocative text by Hiroshi Osada. It comes as no surprise, then, to find that Osada (1939-2015) was an award-winning poet and children’s author, nor that Arai has won the Astrid Lingred Memorial Award and the JBBY Prize, among others.
No people dwell in this lovely book—few animals either. But we don’t miss them. Every Color of Light comes to a close with the reader (echoing the movement of the earlier raindrops), “falling falling soundly soundly asleep asleep.”
In the end, this lyrical ode to nature is also a beautiful bedtime story.
Written by Hiroshi Osada
Illustrated by Ryōji Arai
Translated from the Japanese by David Boyd
2020, Enchanted Lion Books
Awards: Publishers Weekly Best Picture Book of 2020; Kirkus Best Book of 2020; Shelf Awareness Best Children’s Book of 2020
Award-winning opera singer Nanette McGuinness is the translator of 60 books and graphic novels for children and adults from French, Italian, and German into English, including the much-loved Geronimo Stilton Graphic Novels (Papercutz, 2007-17). Two of her latest translations, Luisa: Now and Then (Humanoids, 2018) and California Dreamin’: Cass Elliot Before the Mamas & the Papas (First Second, 2017) were chosen for YALSA’s Great Graphic Novels for Teens; Luisa: Now and Then was also a 2019 Stonewall Honor Book and a 2020 GLLI Translated YA Book Prize Honor Book. Her most recent translations include Little Josephine: Memory in Pieces (Humanoids, 2020), Undead Messiah #3 and Bibi & Miyu, (both TOKYOPOP, 2020) Brina Cat #2: City Cat and The Sisters, Vol. 6: Hurricane Maureen (both Papercutz, 2020).