In this double debut from Scottish poet Louise Greig and Irish illustrator Ashling Lindsay, the coming of darkness is imagined as The Night Box.
A little boy named Max is outside his house in the country as the light fades. It’s time to wave goodbye to the day and come in, but a box is waiting, and Max has the key. While his kitten looks on, Max opens the Night Box, and magical darkness begins to pour out: “Darkness tumbles into the air. / It dances and whirls around the room.”
Greig imagines the character of Night through wonderful imagery: Night is mischievous, chasing other colors away; Night is huge, big enough to hold a house, a pond and a forest. And as Night “soars, streams, stretches up to the sky,” a thousand stars appear.
This is, of course, a bedtime story, and the gentleness of Night comes through Lindsay’s rustic, comforting illustrations, in which lots of white space keeps this tale from being too dark.
In the morning, Max opens the box and “WHOOSH! Night slips inside as Day sweeps out.”
First published in the U.K. in 2017, this beautiful, award-winning picture book has the appeal of a classic and is sure to be a hit with readers and families in the U.S.