Saturday, October 25, 2014

Wait Till The Moon is Full, by Margaret Wise Brown. Illustrated by Garth Williams

Staff Review by Chris Saliba

This classic by Margaret Wise Brown is a beautiful and sensitive story about a protective mother and her inquisitive child. It is written in in a poetic language that features dancing animals, singing birds and the changing face of the moon. The delight of the storytelling is matched in equal measure by the illustrations of Garth Williams.

A little raccoon asks his mother if he can see the night. He had seen the day, and now wanted to see the night. The little racoon lives with his mother in a big, warm chestnut tree. His mother cautions him to wait. “Wait till the moon is full,” she says. The mother raccoon then goes on to sing her son some songs about the splendours of the night under the moon.

Soft in the night
In the bright moonlight
Rabbits run all through the night
And never bump into each other
In the Full of the Moon
When the Moon is Full

After many nights of waiting, his mother finally says that the moon is full and he can go out to play. Under the bright light of the moon he finds wonderful scenes of nighttime animals playing, talking and having fun.

This is a beautiful and sensitive story about a protective mother and her inquisitive child. Margaret Wise Brown (1910 - 1952) writes in a poetic language about dancing animals, singing birds and the changing face of the moon. The delight of the storytelling is matched in equal measure by the illustrations of Garth Williams. The drawings on each page, mostly done in black and brown ink, are like miniature works of art, with lots of wonderful detail that adds to the story. For example, he draws the little raccoon pulling along behind him a toy raccoon suspended on wheels. The mother is drawn performing all manner of domestic tasks - rolling out pastry, washing and bringing home the shopping in a straw basket.

The big payoff of the story is the last page of full colour illustrations, which contrasts nicely against the black and brown ink drawings of the rest of the book. A heart-warming story that will make you think all is right with the world.

Wait Till The Moon is Full, by Margaret Wise Brown. Illustrated by Garth Williams. Published by HarperCollins. ISBN: 978-0064432221  $14.95

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