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Return Hardcover – August 2, 2016
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From School Library Journal
K-Gr 4—In this satisfying conclusion to the magnificent picture book trilogy, the young heroine once again tries to get her aloof illustrator father's attention and, failing, departs from her mundane sepia-colored world to a fantastical realm via a door she draws with her magic red crayon. This time, her father follows in her footsteps and catches up to her and her friends in the majestic and mysterious city. When crayon-thieving soldiers attack, epic escapades ensue as the duo and their friends flee, then discover a clever solution to defeating their foes that results in father and daughter finally bonding in a touching finale. Like its predecessors, this wordless tale brims with excitement and adventure. Becker's stunning watercolor and pen-and-ink illustrations depict a breathtaking world that captivates without a written narrative—and one that readers will want to come back to again and again. VERDICT Though this title relies somewhat on the audience's knowledge of the previous books, it is an absolute must for any collection and will draw new fans just as it will delight those who enjoyed the previous two installments.—Yelena Alekseyeva-Popova, formerly at Chappaqua Library, NY
This breathless finale to Becker's Journey trilogy (Journey, 2013; Quest, 2014) takes readers back to the intricate interior of an alternate world where crayons wield power...The father and child's mutual adventure unspools silently but with urgency. Readers remember the dad's distraction, which started both this book and the trilogy itself. When cave paintings depict the dad as the hero, casting out the villain, hearts swell and eyes well.A fantastic final leg to a reading journey that altered, expanded, and enriched the landscape of children's literature—and surely many young people's lives.
—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
In a bravura finish to the trio of wordless tales that began with 2013’s Journey, Caldecott Honoree Becker brings still more splendor and feeling to his architectural fantasy world...Fantastic contraptions, elaborate landscapes, and breathless escapes would each on their own distinguish this installment; together, they dazzle. That the father is redeemed by entering his daughter’s kingdom and mastering its rules gives the story a sense of moral justice. Becker’s creation is a gift to his readers—one they’ll want to save for their own children.
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
In this satisfying conclusion to the magnificent picture book trilogy...Becker’s stunning watercolor and pen-and-ink illustrations depict a breathtaking world that captivates without a written narrative—and one that readers will want to come back to again and again. Though this title relies somewhat on the audience’s knowledge of the previous books, it is an absolute must for any collection and will draw new fans just as it will delight those who enjoyed the previous two installments.
—School Library Journal (starred review)
This third, wordless installment (Journey, rev. 9/13; Quest, rev. 9/14) brings the story full circle, beginning and ending in the same city brownstone shown in the first book. While Return can be enjoyed on its own, fans will find rewarding similarities to, and subtle differences from, the other books...Even if her character has grown up, readers can return to this world again and again.
The dazzling, wordless picture-book trilogy that began with "Journey" (2013) and "Quest" (2014) comes to a rapturous conclusion with "Return" (Candlewick, 40 pages, $15.99), as Aaron Becker brings children ages 4-9 back to the hushed, lantern-hung woods and fantastical turrets and waterways of a marvelous realm. Rich indigos, purples and golds predominate in Mr. Becker’s captivating pictures of a child and her surprise companion whose love and ingenuity win the day in a setting of magical beauty.
—The Wall Street Journal
The watercolors remain breathtaking, and there are moments of high invention...It’s a must-read for fans.
Top customer reviews
By the way, plan to add a red ball or a red kite to your shopping list. (We already have a red bike from Journey/Quest). Ready your crayons to explore the amazing world of Mr. Becker’s imagination. Oh, to be his actual children – what a treat that would be.
What I like a lot is that there is strengthened connection between parent and child, because Journey (first book) leaves me as a parent with mixed feelings at the beginning. While we (me and kids) look book together, you read (see) how busy parents don't have time for kids that long so much to play with them. While this is life; we as parents also need to do stuff around house, I got feeling in Journey that was somehow pictured as 'bad'. So connecting again was nice part for me and also kids... It's so important message they can rely on us! And after all, parents aren't so boring as they would think ;)
I don't need to say how great done are these books and totally doesn't need words, right?