"When I was little, I had a dream."
So begins the new book by William Heimbach, illustrated by Angelina Tolentino. The story inspires us to think about our dreams while playfully showing kids the diversity of animals and environments in the world. If we dream about a whale, what does the whale dream about - perhaps a snail? The poetic quality of the story and the vivid illustration style makes for the perfect book to read before bedtime.
"A WHALE WHO DREAMT OF A SNAIL"
"Heimbach presents a lullaby app with the hypnotizing look and feel of a mandala."
A boy is tucked in bed under a crazy quilt. “I dreamt of things that were never seen, / sunlit valleys with hidden streams / that flowed to oceans deep and clean.” Clearly the work is for the young, and they too should be tucked in bed, for the action here is purely visual—and minimal at that—and there is no need to be touching the screen.
Tolentino’s artwork has a Rousseau-esque naïveté, albeit on a simpler level; muffled chimes and gongs serenade the narrator, whose voice approaches a whisper as her inflection rises and falls to the rhyme. In that deep, clean ocean lives a whale, and the whale is also dreaming. The whale dreams of a desert and sand, where a snail of many hues is dreaming of a forest dripping with dew. In the forest, hummingbirds dream of snow reflecting moonlight, and burrowed in the snow is a mouse who is dreaming of a warm cabin. Rather than discontent, Heimbach coaxes a sense of adventure and exploration—a great circle—from the dreamscapes, each beckoning. In the final tableau, all of the animals appear as constellations in the night sky that enfolds the cabin, giving a timeless, ancient quality to the lullaby. A passage toward sweet dreams, with enough variety in the imagery for repeat visits. -KirkusReviews.com