The Moth and the Sun

Children - Fable
44 Pages
Reviewed on 09/24/2014
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Author Biography

Gary Bernard graduated from Rhode Island School of Design in 1990 (BFA) and began illustrating for publications like The National Review, Stocks and Commodities, Billboard and The New Republic. His first illustrated book, Pemba Sherpa (by Olga Cossi, Odyssey Books; 2009) won a Junior Library Guild Award, was added to The Amelia Bloomer Project and recently included into Boston College's "PIRLS" (the Progress in International Reading Literacy Study). He has authored and illustrated 3 other books; Ollie and Tugg (Odyssey Books, 2010), The Moth and the Sun (Year Twenty, 2014) and Salted Water (unpublished) which was included in the award winning documentary, Amazing Grace:Jeff Buckley.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite

There is a watermark on the cover of The Moth and the Sun. If you look closely, you can see the outstretched wings of a moth. We tend to take moths for granted. In fact, many of us don't really like them. But they are creatures of mystery, always searching for the light, always looking beyond, moving beyond what is here and now. This is a charming story about a moth flying around Paris, France. It sees all kinds of things: tall buildings, a mounted knight, but best of all, it sees the sun. The moth loves the light shining from the sun and it wants to fly all the way to the sun to meet the source of this great light. Even the blades of grass are captured by the moth's enthusiasm and they want to go too. Alas, the moth cannot take the grass, but it suggests that perhaps the wind will take the grass to meet the sun. This story is a fable, a fantasy, but it's also a learning tool, not only about moths and even a little bit about Paris, it's a learning tool about language because this book is trilingual. In other words, it's written in three languages: French, English and Spanish.

The author, Gary Bernard, tells a story in his introduction to this book. It is a story about this book, which he claims has magical powers as it was discovered buried away and forgotten. His introductory story also tells the reader about a man in Paris who wrote stories and drew pictures about nature. This man was known as Papy de nuit (Grandfather of the night). We are told that Papy de nuit actually wrote this book. Gary Bernard is merely sharing it with us. The magical treasure in this book is not just the sharing of the moth's story and the lovely illustrations, it is the sharing of the reader's stories, as there is a section at the end of the book where the reader may add his/her own story about the moth. The magical treasure is the treasure of sharing. Well done!