Almost all children’s books include a varying degree of text with the aim of helping the child learn to read at some level. Wave is not one of those books.
Instead, artist Suzy Lee creates an entire book with only illustrations. Each illustration fills the page, telling the story of a young girl and her day at the beach. The ocean foam rolls in on the crests of waves onto the beach. Seagulls sneak up behind her as she strolls along. She collects seashells from the shore. Each picture tells a tiny piece of the full story, the perfect method for encouraging children to use their imagination and fill in the blanks or even add words themselves.
Wave is most impressive as Lee only uses two shades of water color to create a minimalist effect. Despite the limitations, she uses those shades to their utmost, making any viewer forget how many colors are actually involved. The simplicity of the illustrations adds to the wide open feeling of being at the beach with and endless sense of freedom and clean air and all the good things children relish about the outdoors. There’s a bit of humor to be found as well. Kids will giggle at the seagulls and take joy in the idea of gathering up various seashells out of the sand. The back of the book is a perfect example as the little girl displays her collection while a seagull sits upon her head without a care.
Wave is a book that is sure to be loved by adults and children alike.