William Joyce, famous for his animated films like “Toy Story,” invites you to begin a journey into the “Guardians of Childhood,” with The Man in the Moon – the first in a series that will include later books with other familiar childhood friends – Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy, the Sandman, the Easter Bunny.
Joyce tells the story like an old fable with the hero, MiM, or the Man in the Moon, who hides from Pitch, the King of Nightmares. The details are rich with excitement – planets that are plundered, stars extinguished, airships diverted – but Joyce’s illustrations are even better. Full page illustrations jump off the page with energizing color and whimsical graphics – Jules Verne rocket ships, telescopes, robots, the Moon Clipper. You can almost taste the lunar ice cream and space juice nectarine.
In the end, the Man in the Moon becomes a nightlight to scare away bad dreams because
“This growing up is a tricky business.”
The Man in the Moon is beautiful – worth getting, if just to look at the pictures.