Here at The Billy Blog, reviews are commonplace (you know, whenever I can't think of anything real to write about, I just tell you about the things I like!), but book reviews are somewhat of a rarity. In fact, I can't recall having reviewed a book thus far, and here I find myself reviewing a children's book! Well, there is a reason for this - this book is AMAZING!!! What children's book am I talking about?
Why it's none other than Big Things, by Auntie Licia and Unkie Wayne. As of yet, I do not have permission from the copyright holder(s) to license dissemination of this work, so I'll only be able to offer a limited sample of images from the book, which I believe falls under the "fair use" provision of US copyright law pertaining to reviews. However, I am fairly confident that I will be able to obtain permission, so I offer a tentative promise to share the work in its entirety in a future post.
Certain frequenters of The Billy Blog are aware that Auntie Licia and Unkie Wayne are very dear to me. However, I believe that my appreciation of Big Things is independent of that fact. Big Things is on the forefront of books written to children, rather than for children. In fact, Big Things actually opens by addressing the as-of-yet unborn child to deliver its overarching messages of how belief in oneself can lead to great accomplishment, that opportunity is boundless, and that family will always be there to offer support. Of course, because the opening is written to the unborn, it is perfect for an expectant mother or father to read to the child, but the message is also appropriate for young children as well.
One of the other appealing aspects of Big Things is the artwork. The illustrations, cheerful and brightly colored, mainly feature a child and his yet-to-be achievements. The people are perfectly drawn to the target audience of children - the characters are simple enough that a child can identify with them, yet nuanced enough to actually distinguish certain individuals.
Finally, in addition to the uplifting and inspiring message it delivers to children, Big Things is also a very touching story for an adult to read to his child. The message of accomplishment, as written to the child, becomes a visionary tale for all the hopes and desires the parent has for his child. For parents of a child not yet born, the emotion is compounded. It provides a bonding opportunity for the parent and child, and it spurs the parent toward a more real understanding that his child will soon be experiencing the activities described in the book.
I cannot recommend Big Things by Auntie Licia and Unkie Wayne highly enough. I would tell you to scour your local bookstores to find this treasure, but I don't want you to waste your time. If your local bookstore was fortunate to get a hold of a copy or two, you wouldn't be lucky enough to be the one to find it first - it would be long gone. However, keep your eyes open for it - someday, when you're looking for something else, you may just be fortunate enough to stumble across it. Don't let it get away!