This is one of my favorite pictures Nancy took of my C on our vacation in California. It's so summery. I wonder what that is floating in the blue sky above her head....a flying saucer, a kite, or.... a balloon!
I have to write about Emily's Balloon by Komako Sakai because it reminds me of the Caldecott Honor book Play With Me from 1955, the classic French film, The Red Balloon from 1956 by Albert Lamorisse and of course The Yellow Balloon in Nancy's last post.
It's funny because I had been telling N about this book and how the art reminds me so much of Play With Me (which we both adore from childhood) and then, there it was at the ALA Chronicle Books booth for her to see. I took this lovely action shot of the Chronicle Books booth on my way to grab a coffee. Everything was so rush, rush for us but I'm really glad we made it. (Next year: Chicago ALA, here we come!)
Emily's Balloon is the innocent, sweet story of a little girl who gets a balloon and as she plays with it, she forms an attachment to it and the balloon becomes her friend. When the yellow balloon gets stuck in a tree and her mother can't reach it, Emily misses it as she had plans to feed it dinner, dress it in her pajama cap and tuck it into bed with her. Her mother promises to get a ladder in the morning. But still, Emily can't sleep. She looks out the window and sees her yellow balloon nestled in the tree. She imagines it is the moon and finally goes to sleep.
Komako Sakai won the Japanese Picture Book Prize for Emily's Balloon. It's a simple 3 color print with soft, loose pastel lines, perhaps reminiscent of a calmer, more innocent time. Following is a trailer from Le Voyage du Ballon Rouge inspired by the classic Lamorisse film.