Jonathan And The Big Blue Boat

And I ran, I ran so far away... 

*Really cool how Philip C. Stead paints over old charts, maps, and timetables (not to mention appropriate, given the subject matter)   
*Even though I had some serious problems with it, there's no arguing with the fact that JATBBB has the whimsy many people look for in a kid book
*I liked it more than the other Stead story I reviewed on this site a few years ago

*Almost seems like a manifesto justifying running away 
*I can't believe the book ended the way that it did -- how did Jonathan not wake up from this apparent dream he was having (to be fair, I would have awarded Stead positive points for leaving it open-ended if the topic wasn't so steeped in con #1) 
*I'm all for parents using the cold turkey approach to get kids to grow up or behave, but what Jonathan's folks did was extremely harsh; especially when they effectively mocked their son when delivering the news


This is a voyage you're better off not taking.  While it's nice that this collection of misfits forms a family by the end, it's no more watchable a family than, say, the Partridge Family is today.  The artwork is something to behold, no doubt; but other than that, I found the story about as stale as some year-old hardtack.  In fact, it's the illustration that acts as a life preserver; saving it from the depths of Destruction normally reserved for such a mutinous plot point (that condones running away).  [For all of you who clicked on the link above, it also goes to show that the word "Stead" is synonymous with "innovative artwork" and "Donate."] 

Buy / Borrow / DONATE / Destroy


Ali B said...

I loved The Partridge Family! That being said, I'm starting to feel ambivalent about the whole "merry band of misfits" theme. A bit played out, huh?

mysteryguy said...