The Tale Of Brian And The House Painter Mervyn

a fable for children and their parents

Children - Fable
68 Pages
Reviewed on 02/25/2022
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Jessica Barbosa for Readers' Favorite

Brian is the son of the richest man in Sandstone-by-the-Sea but he is stricken with a mysterious illness and not even his brothers, sisters, and friends are allowed to visit him. After Brian’s mysterious disease was diagnosed, he spent most of his time in a bare white room, on a bare white bed, unable to play or even read. It all changed one day when his father hired Mervyn who paints a whole, new wonderful world. What adventures will these beautiful paintings bring Brian? Find out in The Tale Of Brian And The House Painter Mervyn, a fable for children and their parents by Lance Lee and illustrated by Meilo So.

The Tale Of Brian And The House Painter Mervyn is a fantastical story that starts with a sick and sad little boy named Brian. Through his meeting with growling, grumpy Mervyn, Brian is taken on an amazing adventure through the world of art, both literally and figuratively. Lance Lee paints vivid scenes that are as colorful and mesmerizing as the art that accompanies the story. Mervyn is standoffish, unlikeable, but he paints the most beautiful scenery and his art comes to life, bringing joy and awe to those who see it. Meilo So brings life to the story in the same way Mervyn does. The colorful art accompanies the fantastical fable and together they create a magical vision of the book. But of course, such great powers have consequences and the story delves deeper into the effect this has on the people and the community. Along the way, people learn the consequences of their actions and greed and I think their regret and redemption were the best parts of the plot! This story successfully kept my attention right to the very end and, overall, I found this to be an exceptional book. Great work!

Miche Arendse

The Tale Of Brian And The House Painter Mervyn by Lance Lee takes place in the oddly eccentric yet traditional village of Sandstone-by-the-sea in the home of Brian, a little boy with an unknown disease. Brian falls ill and the doctor advises that he should stay in bed and avoid all excitement. This is a difficult task for any person but especially for a young adventurous boy. In his drab room, Brian begins to yearn for the outside world and the adventure waiting there but is stuck in his room that is white, white, white. Brian’s father, upon seeing how sad he is, decides to find a painter to fill Brian’s room with the scenes he wishes to see. Everyone turns Moab away until he meets a peculiar painter who turns the entire village of Sandstone-by-the-Sea upside down.

Lance Lee does an excellent job of writing a fun and peculiar children’s book in The Tale Of Brian And The House Painter Mervyn. The book is filled with a variety of weird and wacky characters that are sure to entertain and hold the attention of any child. The story itself is so intriguing as it moved quite quickly through various events in the book, from Brian getting sick to his family realizing he needs a change of scenery to hiring Mervyn, and finally the drama that ensues from Mervyn's paintings. I think this fast pace and the eccentric storyline is definitely a plus with a children’s book as you don’t want something too long-winded. Overall, this was an enjoyable book and I can definitely see any child loving this story.

Carolina Restrepo

The Tale of Brian and the House Painter Mervyn is an extremely imaginative tale accompanied by illustrations that bring the Sandstone-by-the-Sea world to life. Lance Lee comes up with an original story about family, villages, and community. It reminds the reader how things are unappreciated until they are gone. Out of a family of 14, Brian is confined to his room with a strange illness. His life now consists of white walls, bedsheets, a ceiling, and walls, which leads to his despair and terrifying boredom. His worried family manages to find a solution to Brian’s boredom. Mervyn, the exotic and magical painter, becomes a pivotal figure in Brian's and the village’s story. A great read for all ages!

I absolutely loved this story from the second I began to read it. While Brian is in his room missing the sounds of birds, the way the wind feels on his skin, the way Brian needs the sounds that nature makes daily woke me up to how much we take for granted. They are the simplest of things; we are so used to our surroundings that we don’t appreciate them as they should. I don’t know what I would do without hearing the birds and the wind. Can I please move to Sandstone-by-the-Sea? The illustrations are incredibly unique yet perfect for the book; they have the perfect relationship. There is an astounding variety of characters that in turn reflect different walks of life. I only wished it was longer so I could live in that world for a couple of hours. Meilo So’s illustrations were an incredible plus to the story. I recommend The Tale of Brian and the House Painter Merwyn by Lance Lee to everyone; there are many things to take away from this reading.