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Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Review: Magic Words by Edward Field, illustrated by Mike Blanc

Magic Words
From the Ancient Oral Tradition of the Inuit

Edward Field, poet
Mike Blanc, illustrator
Vanita Books

This picture book captures a magic of beginnings of the Inuit people on Earth, back when words could make things happen. Danish explorer Knud Rasmussen jotted the story down in 1921, which Edward Field, a poet with a shelf of trophies, translated into English.

The words tend toward the abstract, but with the illustrations, the combined whole creates a dynamic and inspiring work. My own imaginative cog wheels spun. The fertile land spawns people who become animals, animals people. While the words down create a since of building climax, the pictures do. Towards the end, the abstract pictures, with their slight hint of three dimensions, became unobtrusively complex so that you may not immediately notice the images have dual images humans and animals within one another.

I'm sure kids will love it, too.

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