The front cover and the first page show a ladder going up and off the page – what could be at the top? Is it a hat, or (next page) a black and white cat? A dog, or a frog on a log? …. An invisible man, or a door to Japan? (It has a little flag on the lock plate)….It could be the moon, or a yellow balloon. Is it safe to assume that it’s not a baboon? The ideas get more fantastical as we progress through the book- this is good fun. “What about a hotel that looks like a shell, that’s run by a snail by the name of Miguel?”- and that’s not even the most words and ideas on a double-page spread! We are none the wiser by the end, and are asked what we think might be at the top, so there is plenty of scope for imaginative conversation here.
The illustrations, in watercolour and pencil with digital assistance, are simple but effective, and often witty. The baboon, which isn’t at the top, is full of character. This will be really enjoyable to share with one child or a group.