This is my go-to book for every new baby in my life. This book provides the most important advice a person can receive in their life — how to survive in the land of Fairy Tales. This picture book has been adapted from a poem that appeared in Neil Gaiman's short story collection, Fragile Things, and it will enchant and entrance you.
The artwork of Charles Vess is the perfect combination of joyful and just slightly eerie to suck you into the world you are entering to accompany Gaiman's magical words. There is definitely some fairy dust sprinkled on this book.
And never forget the wise words: "Trust dreams, trust your heart, and trust your story." Recommended By Becky H., Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
A large, loving family in the 1930s Dust Bowl finds a andldquo;tumbleweed babyandrdquo;andmdash;a wild babyandmdash;in the plains near their cozy farm home. The babyandrsquo;s new siblings discover the ways she fits and doesnandrsquo;t fit into the family, ultimately deciding that her wildness makes her one of them. The rhythm and voice of the text make this feel like a classic tall tale, and it pairs perfectly with the dreamy, warm art from master illustrator Charles Vess.
"'Touch the wooden gate in the wall you never saw before,' invites Gaiman's poem, first published in A Wolf at the Door (2000), reborn as a lavishly illustrated small-format picture book. A bipedal, bushy-tailed cat, wearing attire befitting Robin Hood, enters a fairy tale landscape filled with subtle and obvious allusions to familiar characters and stories. A cottage door leads him into a hallway of dramatic arches where a cat with an injured paw becomes his companion ('if any creature tells you that it hungers, feed it. If it tells you that it is dirty, clean it'). The wanderers press on, encountering a castle containing three sequestered princesses ('Do not trust the youngest. Walk on'), a ghostly ferryman, and other creatures. Recalling his work on Gaiman's Blueberry Girl, Vess's compositions are distinguished by elegant, winding lines — gnarled vines, plumes of smoke, dragon tails — and intimate frames that evoke moments of gentle wisdom. Young readers should relish the chimerical vision while older Gaiman fans should grasp the underlying suggestion that the compass used to navigate fairy tales can also guide us in the real world. All ages. (May)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"A magical, incantatory poem.... It could be instructions for a child, a writer, a newly minted adult or an elder. It strikes immediately at the place where stories live and provides a feast of archetypes." Kirkus Reviews
Trust your heart, and trust your story.
A renowned storyteller whose words have transported readers to magical realms and an acclaimed illustrator of lushly imagined fairy-tale landscapes guide a traveler safely through lands unknown and yet strangely familiar...
... and home again.
"A perfect reminder to always be on the lookout for magic and wonder. Sometimes, we need those two things the most" (Brightly.com, citing "Books That Teach Kids What It Means to Be a Kind Person").
In this breathtaking jacketed picture book, Neil Gaiman's lyrical poem guides a novice traveler through the enchanted woods of a fairy tale through lush gardens, a formidable castle, and over a perilous river to find the way home again.
Illustrated in full color by Charles Vess, Instructions features lush images of mythical creatures, magical landscapes, and canny princesses. Its message of the value of courage, wit, and wisdom makes it a perfect gift.
A New York Times-bestselling author, Newbery Medalist, and an award-winning illustrator of lushly imagined fairy-tale landscapes offer instructions for traveling through lands unknown and yet strangely familiar. An ideal gift for graduates of any age. Full color.
About the Author
Neil Gaiman is the New York Times
bestselling author of the novels Neverwhere
, American Gods
, Anansi Boys
, The Graveyard Book
, and Good Omens
(with Terry Pratchett); the Sandman series of graphic novels; and the story collections Smoke and Mirrors
and Fragile Things
. He is the winner of numerous literary honors, including the Hugo, Bram Stoker, and World Fantasy Awards, and the Newbery Medal. Originally from England, he now lives in America.
Charles Vess is one of the most acclaimed artists in the field of illustration. He is the winner of the World Fantasy Award for Best Artist. A critically acclaimed fine artist, he has had numerous gallery showings in this country and abroad. He lives in southwest Virginia.