La La La: A Story of Hope
Candlewick Press, oct.3.2017
Story by Kate DiCamillo
Conceived by Kate DiCamillo and featuring enchanting illustrations by Jaime Kim, this nearly wordless graphic story follows a little girl in search of a friend.
"La la la . . . la." A little girl stands alone and sings, but hears no response. Gathering her courage and her curiosity, she skips farther out into the world, singing away to the trees and the pond and the reeds — but no song comes back to her. Day passes into night, and the girl dares to venture into the darkness toward the light of the moon, becoming more insistent in her singing, climbing as high as she can, but still there is silence in return. Dejected, she falls asleep on the ground, only to be awakened by an amazing sound. . . . She has been heard. At last. With the simplest of narratives and the near absence of words, Kate DiCamillo conveys a lonely child’s yearning for someone who understands. With a subtle palette and captivating expressiveness, Jaime Kim brings to life an endearing character and a transcendent landscape that invite readers along on an emotionally satisfying journey.
"Kim’s spreads form a long, almost cinematic sequence. The girl is adorable, though the night world she moves through is dazzling rather than cute—it takes bravery and audacity to sing to that beauty."
Publishers Weekly - Starred Review
The limited palette of comforting, complementary purples and yellows along with the character's expressive body language evoke both her loneliness and determination to overcome it. For a dreamer, it's easy to imagine a singer in the benevolent face in the moon—here it's a symbol of hope.
Kim’s gouache-and-acrylic artwork, graphically strong and full of heart, illuminates DiCamillo’s concept.
Some books are striking because of their content. Some stand out because they are unlike anything that creator has made before...This one is a little of both.
100 Scope Notes (blog)
The text of this book is one word: La. But the story is abundantly clear.
Kim has created sumptuous images, especially several pages awash in deep, rich purples, that suggest an expansive dreamscape where anything is possible.
The New York Times Book Review